COVID-19 Closed Showers for the Homeless. Quick Thinkers Came to the Rescue.

(Jennette Barnes/WCAI)

This spring, precautions against COVID-19 closed some of the few showers open to people who are homeless and living outdoors, including one in the basement of the Duffy Health Center in Hyannis.

Now, with a little ingenuity and some help from the state, showers are back — in a special trailer that meets COVID-19 protocol.

“We just quickly realized that there was a huge need,” said Melissa Payne, who works in recovery support at the health center.

She was standing in the parking lot, outside the silver metal trailer. It has two exterior doors, and behind each is a bathroom with a shower.

Anyone who needs a shower is welcome, she said.

“So people can just walk up,” she said. “We set them up with what they need. We ask them if they have any health concerns.”

Back at the start of the pandemic, the health center staff told their state senator, Julian Cyr, that if they had to close their basement shower, it would be great to have an outdoor shower station. Within a few days, the trailer arrived from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency.

Now, visitors can shower three days a week instead of the previous one.

Read the rest of this story at CAI’s website.