October 23rd, 2020

Temporary homeless shelter closed at Fritz Sick


By Jensen, Randy on June 20, 2020.

LETHBRIDGE HERALD

With the ending of the City of Lethbridge State of Local Emergency, the temporary homeless shelter has been closed at the Fritz Sick Centre.

“I am happy to report that as of Wednesday, the homeless shelter has returned to 2 Avenue North from its temporary location at the Fritz Sick gymnasium,” said Marc Rathwell, Director of Emergency Management for the City of Lethbridge, in a news release. “With this change, we felt confident in ending the State of Local Emergency for Lethbridge.”

In late March, the City’s Emergency Management Agency made the decision to convert the Fritz Sick gymnasium into a temporary homeless shelter. This provided the physical space needed for individuals to follow Alberta Health’s recommended physical distancing guidelines.

While the primary shelter was being housed at Fritz Sick, the shelter on 2 Avenue North was used as an intox (safe sobering) facility. Significant renovations were also made to the facility during the last few months to create a space that is more conducive to physical distancing.

With declining COVID-19 numbers and a newly renovated space to safely support the homeless population, the Emergency Co-ordination Centre felt it was safe for individuals to return to the homeless shelter.

“This is the longest State of Local Emergency that our city has ever seen but just because it’s over, doesn’t mean the crisis has passed,” said Mayor Chris Spearman. “I want to commend all of the staff within the City, our partner organizations and our residents for their efforts over the last three months. As we continue to combat COVID-19 we will need this ongoing community support to continue moving forward.”

With phase 2 of the Provincial Relaunch Strategy underway, the Alberta Government is encouraging regular testing. Alberta is a world leader in testing, which is a key factor in the province’s ability to relaunch safely.

Whether you have symptoms or not, all Albertans are encouraged to get tested with an emphasis on those who have attended a Stage 2 activity or if they intend to interact with COVID vulnerable people. There is no constraint to the frequency that an individual can be tested. Testing data helps government and public health officials make decisions, particularly as they relate to Alberta’s relaunch strategy.

For more information on testing and symptoms, visit: https://www.alberta.ca/covid-19-testing-in-alberta.aspx.

For more information on the City’s response to COVID-19 visit: http://www.lethbridge.ca/covid19.

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