1 Feb 2022

Covid-19: City Missioner 'deeply worried' about Omicron

From Morning Report, 6:47 am on 1 February 2022

There will be no repeat of the massive push to get all homeless people off the streets before the coming Omicron outbreak takes hold.

During the first nationwide lockdown in 2020, Government agencies and social service providers housed essentially all rough sleepers.

The Government kicked in an extra $100 million, and thousands of people were placed into emergency and transitional housing.

Auckland City Missioner Helen Robinson told RNZ reporter Hamish Cardwell that while she is "deeply worried" about what's to come, they are just focussing on keeping their existing services going.

The Ministry of Health said in a statement DHBs have established what are called Care Coordination Hubs in each region, made up of local health and welfare support providers along with the Ministry of Social Development.

If a homeless person tests positive for the virus, the hubs arrange accommodation for them to isolate in.

The government says the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development Te Tūā Papa Kura Kāinga has been working closely with housing and social service agencies to help marginalised communities during the pandemic.