With unemployment soaring, and a concerted effort in Vermont to get homeless people into rooms of their own, the two-story brick motel is no longer quiet.
“We have 80 rooms,” the manager said, “and 60 to 65 of them are housing people from the shelter or (state) Economic Services.” The shelter she referred to is Good Samaritan Haven in Barre, which since mid-March—the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in Vermont—has provided motel rooms to the homeless who had been staying in the four shelters the organization operates in Barre and Montpelier. The motel rooms give people a place to comply with Gov. Phil Scott’s stay-at-home order and social distancing guidelines and 24-hour access to a sink for frequent hand washing. Good Samaritan volunteers deliver three meals a day. The Economic Services Division of the Department for Children and Families (DCF) administers benefits to help people meet their basic needs."
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