As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rock the nation, one of America’s largest warming centers said that its services haven’t been compromised at this point.
Chad Audi, Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries (DRMM) president and CEO, on Monday remained optimistic.
“We are not panicking,” Audi told the Advance. “So that is good.”
A statewide coronavirus hotline will be open 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 1-888-535-6136. Information can be found on the DHHS website or the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention website.
DRMM is the nation’s 13th largest substance abuse treatment center in the United States. It serves more than 2,200 people each day.
The center’s residential housing, outpatient treatment program, and warming center have continued without interruption. However, Audi said his staff members are cleaning and sanitizing more frequently than normal. All clients who arrive for food or shelter are having their temperature taken at point of entry. If they have temperatures above normal, they will be referred to the city of Detroit Health Department.
“It could be a common cold,” Audi said. “If they report that and it’s just a common cold, we’ll bring them back.”
Audi said that the coronavirus scare has resulted in increased safety mechanisms.
“We’re doing more rounds of cleaning,” Audi added. “We used to do the cleaning of the bathroom every shift. Now, we do it every two hours. And we clean the surfaces constantly all day.”
State Reps. Isaac Robinson (D-Detroit) and Brenda Carter (D-Pontiac) were scheduled to host a teleconference on Monday evening with homeless activists, health care professionals and other social justice advocates to identify ways in which state government and other institutions can best help to meet the needs of affected people during the COVID-19 crises.
“Tonight’s call is about giving a voice to those who work with housing justice,” Robinson said.
Wayne County won’t foreclose on any homes in 2020 due to the COVID-19 crisis, Wayne County Treasurer Eric Sabree said in a Monday news release.
“Given the fact that all taxpayers will be facing economic hardships in the coming months, I have made the decision to withhold all properties from the 2020 foreclosure petition,” Sabree said. “We will continue to work with our state, Wayne County and local officials to ensure decisions that are made will keep the health, safety, and financial stability of taxpayers in mind.”
In 2020, about 3,200 occupied homes — about 10,000 properties in total — likely were heading to foreclosure, the Detroit Free Press reports. There are 32,000 Detroit properties that are tax delinquent and about 8,300 are designated occupied and likely to be foreclosed, per the Free Press.
Sabree said that delinquent taxes still must be paid.
“I advise taxpayers to make regular payments no matter how small and stay compliant with their payment plans. Interest will continue to accrue on the unpaid balance,” he said.
Payments can be made online, at a DivDat kiosk, through U.S. mail, by phone or mobile app.
No DDOT buses Tuesday
Shortly after 8 a.m., the city of Detroit put out a statement that Detroit Department of Transportation (DDOT) buses wouldn’t run Tuesday amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
“Due to the driver shortage, there will be no DDOT bus service today. We apologize for the inconvenience and will provide updates as we can,” the city said in an email.
That came after an email around 7:30 a.m. that fewer than 10% of DDOT buses were operating at that time.
“We are asking passengers to seek other forms of transportation while we work to address our drivers’ concerns,” the city said. “We apologize for the inconvenience.”