Greensboro, N.C. – April 9, 2020 – The YWCA Greensboro announced today, that it is providing a $2/hour, premium pay increase for all hourly employees working in the organization’s Emergency Homeless Shelter. The increase went into effect on March 25 and will continue until all “shelter in place” directives are lifted. Lindy Perry-Garnette, CEO stated, “During this crisis, we have not heard a lot about emergency shelter workers who are working, every day with a high-risk population. These folks are risking their own health and that of their families, on a daily basis, to ensure that vulnerable people, including families with children, who are experiencing homelessness, have a safe place to be while we all outwait this public health crisis.”
The YWCA Greensboro Shelter began 24/7 operations on March 16 and began sheltering in place on March 18. Beginning Monday April 6, all shelter staff are required to wear surgical masks and all residents have been provided masks and are encouraged to wear them. While Guilford County is still in the early stages of experiencing COVID-19, so far, all shelter residents and staff are healthy at this time.
Perry-Garnette added, “We are extremely grateful for our community partners who have stepped up in these challenging times. The premium pay increases are made possible by a grant from the United Way’s Virus Relief Fund and additional emergency funding from the Lincoln Financial Foundation. United Healthcare is now providing lunches for the shelter five (5) days a week, at no charge, and countless community groups, faith communities, businesses and individuals are providing food and needed supplies. Our Congregational Nurse, provided through Cone Health, is checking in on residents and screening potential new residents. The risk of thanking people is that we may inadvertently leave someone out, but please know we are extremely appreciative of the many in our community who are demonstrating, on a daily basis, their compassion and concern for all of our neighbors.”
As we continue this work, the YWCA is in need of monetary donations to cover additional staffing, supplies and utilities. Donations can be made at: ywcagsonc.org or by mail.
In addition to the Emergency Shelter, All YWCA Greensboro programs are continuing to serve our participants, including the Teen Parent Mentor Program, Healthy Beginnings and Passion to Purse. The YWORLD Youth Program will resume when schools reopen.
The YWCA Greensboro has a proud history, of over 116 years of responding to the daily needs of our community and demonstrating our mission of eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all.
In 1922, the YWCA Greensboro provided a residence for 54 “permanent” and six “transient” women. That same year, volunteers from the YWCA Greensboro District Nurse and Relief Committee fought a devastating flu epidemic. This Committee fostered the creation of the Public Health Department in Guilford County.
We were there for the flu epidemic of 1922 and we will do no less for the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020.