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Eugene sets up more shelters to keep homeless safe during pandemic

The city said each shelter can house 10 people or six tents.

Posted: Apr 6, 2020 7:02 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The city of Eugene is partnering with White Bird Clinic and Carry It Forward to run two temporary shelters in the Amazon and Hilyard community centers' parking lots.

The shelters were constructed Monday morning and are now open to those who qualify. The city said each shelter can house 10 people or six tents. The shelters will house the most at risk in the unhoused community like those with underlying health conditions.

Peter Chavannes, Homeless Systems Policy Manager for Eugene, said the city is working hard to try and get everyone in the community to do their part in flattening the curve.

"We as a community need to come together and work towards containing this transmission and part of the response is helping people minimize their movement," Chavannes said. "If we can do that in parks, in parking lots, at the fairgrounds, then that's what we need to be focusing our attention on."

The city is also using White Bird clinic as a centralized distribution center where the unhoused can pick up food, hygiene supplies, and learn the latest information about COVID-19.

Chavannes said if these shelters fill up and are successful then they will open up more around the city.

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