COVID-19 Homelessness Services

Tent setup at Finley

The City of Santa Rosa is working to support individuals experiencing homelessness to protect this vulnerable population and the community at large from greater spread of COVID-19. Following the Order of the Sonoma County Public Health Officer on March 17, 2020 and guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the City has taken several steps to address homelessness amid the coronavirus pandemic, including establishing a Safe Social Distance Program set up in an area of the parking lot at Finley Community Center. This site will be utilized to provide a temporary, managed social-distancing space for unsheltered populations through the duration of the Sonoma County Shelter in Place Order. 

  1. 08.06.20

    Following measures to address immediate fire threats caused by encampments in areas of Fremont Park, the City is continuing to address homelessness in the park, including adding sanitary facilities and engagement with individuals residing in the park. Read on...
  1. 07.02.2020

    The City is continuing to monitor encampments in Santa Rosa’s Downtown area following last week’s efforts to address encampments at the 101 underpasses and College Avenue and will focus next on encampments creating health and safety hazards in the... Read on...
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  1. City Actions to Date
  2. What's Next?
  3. County Support
  4. Homelessness Amid Coronavirus

City Actions to Date to Address Homelessness During COVID-19

  • May:  Safe Social Distance Site in Area of Parking Lot at Finley Community Center
    A section of the parking lot at Finley Community Center will be utilized to provide a temporary, managed social-distancing space for unsheltered populations. The site will provide space for 70 tents, with each tent accommodating an individual or couple. The parking lot space to be utilized is located between the Person Senior Wing and the Finley tennis courts; view aerial map. O ccupancy of the site began on May 18. The site is expected to operate through the duration of the Sonoma County Health Offer Shelter in Place Order.
  • Mid-April:  Motel rooms provided for unsheltered high-risk individuals 
    Following outreach and assessment, an additional 26 rooms at the Sandman Motel were provided to high-risk individuals who had been living in encampments within the City.  Face masks were also distributed to individuals living in encampments.
  • Mid-March:  Motel rooms provided for high-risk residents of Sam Jones Homeless Shelter
    45 high-risk residents of Samuel L. Jones Hall Homeless Shelter, aged 65 or older or with preexisting medical conditions, relocated to rooms at Sandman Motel. This action created social distancing space within the shelter and helped prevent vulnerable individuals from potential exposure to COVID-19.  Based on national best practice, strict safety protocols have been implemented in all City-sponsored homeless service operations.
  • Late March:  Sanitation facilities provided for unsheltered individuals
    In coordination with the County of Sonoma, portable toilets and hand washing stations were placed at or near known encampments within the City to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.  Additionally, the City placed debris containers near these encampments.