As the novel coronavirus continues to spread throughout the community in British Columbia, advocates for the homeless are growing increasingly concerned.

Union Gospel Mission (UGM) spokesperson Jeremy Hunka says people living on the street tend to already have compromised immune systems, and don’t have a home to self-isolate in if they become ill.

The mission has moved to increase the distance between clients in its shelter and is screening people for symptoms.

“We’re forced with the agonizing reality that if people come looking for help who have symptoms of COVID-19 we can’t have them in our shelter, because one person could put at risk the other 71 people that are there,” he said.

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