Interim self-isolation site for higher-risk residents approved by Region of Waterloo
The Region of Waterloo administration building is seen in Kitchener, Ont., on Tuesday, June 11, 2013. (David Imrie / CTV Kitchener)
KITCHENER -- Region of Waterloo council has approved an interim self-isolation site designated for residents that are disproportionally affected by COVID-19.
The decision made at the Wednesday night meeting will soon be followed by staff setting up the location most likely at a Kitchener hotel.
The region hopes to have the site open from at least Nov. 30 to Jan. 31, 2021 and house people for roughly two weeks at a time while they complete their COVID-19 self-isolation.
When it comes to who will be able to use the site, Sharlene Sedgwick Walsh, director of healthy living for the region, says it will be for those who are especially vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“They must lack the ability to safely isolate at home for the required time period,” she said. “They may require a place to self-isolate for personal safety reasons, such as the risk of domestic violence, and the third criteria potentially would be they share a household or identify themselves as someone who is at high risk of severe COVID-19.”
The region estimates they will be able to house 30 people and provide them amenities like food from the hotel service and Google Chromebook tablets so they can stay connected with their families.
Walsh adds that staff consulted community groups like the House of Friendship when putting together the plan and will continue to do so once the site is active.
Community support like peer workers will be available to residents for wellness checks and family support.
The site is estimated to have a price tag of just under $76,000. Staff say they plan to submit a request for funding to the federal government on Friday and expect a three- to four-week turnaround for approval.