BOSTON – The Federal Emergency Management Agency will be sending more than $1.4 million to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to reimburse the commonwealth for the costs associated with the sheltering of homeless persons who contracted the coronavirus during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The $1,421,062 Public Assistance grant will reimburse the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services for the costs associated with the sheltering of COVID-positive populations between April 2020 and July 2021.
The agency, in collaboration with the Department of Public Health and Broad Institutes (MIT & Harvard), set up five isolation and recovery sites to help COVID-positive homeless individuals safely isolate and recover.
To run these isolation & recovery sites, the agency contracted with Commonwealth Care Alliance, Behavior Health Network, Eliot Community Human Services, Inc, and North Suffolk Mental Health Association, which provided support staff and counselors to assist with the daily management, behavioral health triage, training, and support for non-congregate sheltering of COVID-positive homeless individuals.
“FEMA is pleased to be able to assist Massachusetts with these costs,” said FEMA Region 1 Regional Administrator Lori Ehrlich. “Providing resources for our partners on the front lines of the pandemic fight is critical to their success, and our success as a nation.”
FEMA’s Public Assistance program is an essential source of funding for states and communities recovering from a federally declared disaster or emergency.
So far, FEMA has provided more than $1 billion in Public Assistance grants to Massachusetts to reimburse the commonwealth for pandemic-related expenses.