Bridgeport city councilman spearheads opening emergency homeless shelter to curb spread of COVID-19

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Bridgeport officials say they've set up an emergency shelter for the city's homeless population in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Jason Reece, 38, of Bridgeport, says he's homeless and currently quarantined in a hospital with symptoms of coronavirus.

Bridgeport City Councilman Jorge Cruz says there's no telling how many other homeless people Reece may have been exposed to before he sought treatment.

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Cruz and state Rep. Antonio Fillipe say they helped get the South End Community Center designated as an emergency homeless shelter, where the homeless can be educated about coronavirus and monitored for symptoms.

Homeless people only have access to the shelter from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. Cruz says he's pushing for an around-the-clock shelter because due to the pandemic, the homeless will no longer have bathroom access at most public places.

Cruz and Filipe say the problem will get worse every day, considering the pandemic is poised to spread quickly within a vulnerable population.

Officials say they're working on expanding hours at the existing facility so it can be available to the homeless population around the clock.

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