Stepping Stones Shelter closed due to COVID-19 outbreak

Rapid testing showed seven out of 20 clients were positive for COVID-19

Daily Herald File Photo Stepping Stones Shelter.

The Stepping Stones Shelter in Prince Albert has temporarily closed after a COVID-19 outbreak, according to YWCA CEO Donna Brooks.

The closure was first announced on the YWCA Prince Albert Facebook page on Thursday afternoon.

Rapid testing was completed on-site Wednesday evening and determined that seven out of 20 clients tested positive for COVID-19, Brooks said.

“We didn’t of course find out how many at once but once we found there was one positive case we had to shut down (and) make sure nobody else came in,” Brooks added.

All clients were transferred to assisted self-isolation from the shelter. The shelter closed on Thursday. Staff members are also self-isolating.

Brooks is unsure how long the closure will last but said it will at least be closed until Monday. She said it could also be as long as two weeks depending on how long staff have to isolate. The YWCA doesn’t have enough staff members to replace staff in isolation.

As of Friday afternoon, Stepping Stones Shelter was not listed under active outbreaks on the provincial website.

Shelters at Central Avenue and Our House are still operational but Brooks said Our House is full and Central Avenue is mostly for women and children. Anyone who needs help accessing emergency shelter after hours can contact Mobile Crisis at 306-764-1011.