COVID-19 Response Timeline
The safety and well-being of our residents and staff are among our highest priorities. Below is a timeline of action steps Columbia Housing has taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We will continue to update our action steps following recommendations from local, state, and national public health officials.
- 07.30.2020: Protecting Residents: Columbia Housing Wants Helping Groups to Follow the Rules
- 07.30.2020: Tanner Foundation/Senn Brothers food box delivery to the residents of Latimer Manor
- 07.30.2020: COVID-19 testing for CH Staff and family through partnership with SC DHEC
- 07.24.2020: Monthly sanitation of main office, senior high rises and common areas
- 07.23.2020: Tanner Foundation/Senn Brothers food box delivery to the residents of the Reserves
- 07.21.2020: Published "Cloth Face Mask Care"
- 07.16.2020: Tanner Foundation/Senn Brothers food box delivery to the residents of Marion St. High Rise and the Elder Cottages
- 07.14.2020: COVID-19 testing at Cayce through partnership with the SC Department of Health and Environmental Controls
- 07.01.2020: Began processing annual recertifications via mail
- 06.26.2020: COVID-19 testing at Marion Street High Rise through partnership with SC Department of Health and Environmental Controls
- 06.22.2020: Published "COVID Resident Resources: SC Thrive"
- 06.19.2020: Monthly sanitation of main office, senior high rises and common areas
- 06.17.2020: Published "Covid Resident Resources: Wateree Community Action, Inc."
- 06.09.2020: COVID-19 testing performed at Oak Read High Rise through partnership with SC Department of Health and Environmental Controls
- 05.27.2020: COVID-19 testing performed at Arrington Manor through partnership with SC Department of Health and Environmental Controls
- 05.22.2020: Monthly sanitation of main office, senior high rises and common areas
- 05.19.2020: COVID-19 testing performed at Rosewood Hills through partnership with SC Deparment of Health and Environmental Controls (DHEC)
- 05.18.2020: Began mailing cloth face coverings to all Public Housing residents
- 05.18.2020: Issued -Running Essential Errands 2
- 05.18.2020: Promoted COVID-19 Testing for Rosewood Hills Seniors
- 05.06.2020: Issued - Tips on Running Essential Errands
- 05.05.2020: Issued - COVID-19 Visitation Protocols for Senior High Rise Communities
- 05.04.2020: Issued - Face Coverings are on the Way!
- 05.04.2020: Issued - Temporary Suspensions of Evictions
- 05.02.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at The Vista
- 05.02.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at Spencer Place
- 05.02.2020: Celebraton Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at Arsenal Hill
- 05.02.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at Arrington Manor
- 05.01.2020: Distributed cloth face coverings to residents of Senior High Rise Communities
- 04.29.2020: Mailed MUSC flyer for free COVID-19 testing to CH residents in 29203
- 04.28.2020: COVID-19 Resources
- 04.27.2020: Social Distancing Won't Last Forever
- 04.25.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at Thornwell & Overbrook
- 04.25.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at Wheeler Hill
- 04.25.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at Rosewood Hills
- 04.25.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at Rosewood Hills Highrise
- 04.20.2020: CH Hires Security Firm to Encourage Social Distancing
- 04.18.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at Hammond Village
- 04.18.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at St. Andrews Terrace
- 04.11.2020: Celebration Sunday - Tanner Foundation Meal Delivery at the Reserves
- 04.08.2020: CARES Act Thank you Letter to Senator Tim Scott
- 04.08.2020: CARES Act Thank You Letter to Senator Lindsey Graham
- 04.08.2020: CARES Act Thank You Letter to Congressman James Clyburn
- 04.08.2020: Open Letter to Dorrah Randall Residents
- 04.07.2020: Open Letter to Housing Choice Voucher Program Landlords
- 04.07.2020: Open Letter to Housing Choice Voucher Program Participants
- 04.06.2020: Open Letter to Public Housing Residents
- 04.06.2020: Governor McMaster issues Stay at Home Order for the state of South Carolina.
- 04.06.2020: Columbia Housing Seeks Vendors to Make Cloth Face Masks!
- 04.06.2020: Columbia Housing releases Level 3 Protocols in the event a COVID-19 case is triggered.
- 04.05.2020: The Housing Authority of the City of Columbia ("Columbia Housing") and the Housing Authority of the City of Cayce ("Cayce Housing") have postponed public hearings on its proposed 2020 Comprehensive Agency Plans and 5-Year Strategic Plans for FY 2020 - 2024 in response to complying with public health officials social distancing safety measures. The public hearings will be rescheduled for an as-yet-undetermined date.
- 04.02.2020: Letter of response to South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center, South Carolina Legal Services, One80 Place Legal Services, Homeless No More, and the Midlands Area Consortium for the Homeless outlining the protections Columbia Housing has taken for Low-Income Families during this COVID-19 pandemic.
- 03.31.2020: Spoke with staff in the DC offices of Senator Tim Scott, Senator Lindsey Graham and Congressman Clyburn regarding regulatory and statutory administrative waivers from the United States Department of Housing & Urban Development.
- 03.31.2020: Columbia Housing adjusting to serve the public in amid COVID-19 pandemic
- 03.27.2020: President Trump signs the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) into law.
- 03.26.2020: Open Letter to Columbia Housing's Program Participants and Residents!
- 03.26.2020: Columbia Housing closes in compliance with Emergency Stay at Home Order by the City of Columbia.
- 03.26.2020: Columbia Housing Senior Facilities to be "Deep Cleaned" Tomorrow.
- 03.25.2020: Columbia Housing Waives Policy to Expedite Reduction in Rent for Residents Who've Lost Income. updated release
- 03.25.2020: Columbia Housing Waives Policy to Expedite Reduction in Rent for Residents Who've Lost Income
- 03.25.2020: Senior Facilities to be "Deep Cleaned" Friday, March 27, 2020
- 03.25.2020: Issued "Rent Reduction" Procedure for residents experiencing a change in income as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.
- 03.25.2020: Received notice from HUD COVID-19 Disaster Relief that Columbia Housing's Statutory and Regulatory Relief Waivers were being held for processing pending Congressional guidance.
- 03.24.2020: Letter to Mayor Benjamin and members of Columbia City Council with updates on Columbia Housing's COVID-19 actions.
- 03.24.2020: Executive Committee's approval to proceed with securing immediate Statutory Relief from our Congressional Delegation on administrative requirements that create an immediate threat to our staff and the residents we serve and is in direct opposition to the guidelines set forth to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
- 03.24.2020: Submitted Federal Regulatory Waiver Request to the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development to postpone specific requirements that we feel we will not be able to comply with unless we violate the guidelines set forth to minimize the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
- 03.23.2020: Spoke with staff in the SC offices of Senator Tim Scott, Senator Lindsey Graham and Congressman Clyburn regarding regulatory and statutory administrative waivers request from the United States Department of Housing & Urban Development.
- 03.19.2020: Open Letter to Housing Choice Voucher Participants and Landlords
- 03.19.2020: Food and/or Meal Distribution Guidelines
- 03.19.2020: Information for CH's Housing Choice Voucher Participants
- 03.18.2020: Implemented staggered work schedules and teleworking options for staff
- 03.18.2020: Restricting Public Access to Property Management Offices and Community Rooms
- 03.18.2020: Housing Choice Voucher Participants - Frequently Asked Questions
- 03.17.2020: Visitation Protocols for Senior High Rise Communities
- 03.17.2020: Public Housing Residents - Frequently Asked Questions
- 03.17.2020: Public Housing Rent, Maintenance, and Public Health Directives
- 03.17.2020: Letter to Public Housing Residents
- 03.17.2020: COVID-19 Senior High-Rise Community Meetings: Dr. Melissa Nolan of the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina and Dr. Eric Brennan from Prisma Health will be joining us in meeting with our residents in the following communities (canceled due to update of protocols from public health officials).
- Arrington Manor
- Oak Reid
- Marion Street
- Rosewood Hills
- 03.16.2020: Restricting Public Access for Administrative Offices
- 03.13.2020: Notified all individuals having reserved the Tillis Center that due to COVID-19 and the CDC's recommendation on Social Distancing, we are canceling all events at the Tillis Center for the next two weeks. Deposits will be refunded and we will accommodate rescheduling these events after the CDC has lifted such recommendations.
- 03.11.2020: Contact PRISMA Health, SC DHEC regarding staff/resident training and possible quarantine measures should that need arise.
- 03.10.2020: Hung 100 informational posters from the CDC regarding avoiding the virus and signs of the virus in the main office and tech services, distributed 150 signs and full-sized posters to Property Management team for communities and high rises
- 03.09.2020: Issued News Release via the website and social media "Columbia Housing's Actions to Address Corona Virus Concerns"
- WISTV ran a story on 3/10/2020 citing our News Release - "Columbia Housing announces precautionary steps to prevent the spread of coronavirus"
- 03.09.2020: Acquired hand sanitizer stations for the main office, tech services, Tillis Center and high rises, distributed disinfectant wipes and solution to Property Management team and maintenance staff.
- 03.09.2020: Fully implemented CDC recommendations:
- Hand sanitizer stations will be placed in the following locations:
- Headquarter & all Lobby Areas throughout our portfolio
- Reception Areas
- Administrative Offices
- Conference Rooms
- High-rise Buildings (Arrington Manor, Marion Street, Oak Reid, Rosewood)
- Tillis Center
- Any Other areas deemed appropriate
- Disinfecting wipes will be distributed to Conference Rooms, Administrative Offices, Reception Areas; and any other areas deemed appropriate.
Columbia Housing's janitorial services contractor is disinfecting common areas and surfaces throughout Columbia Housing's headquarters at 1917 Harden Street, including elevator buttons, door handles, and faucets, and is communicating with the CDC for any guidance on additional recommendations for cleaning procedures.
Disposable gloves and pocket-size hand sanitizer dispensers will be ordered and distributed to inspectors, maintenance technicians, and Columbia Housing staff who perform home visits in the course of their job responsibilities.
Employees who are ill are encouraged to stay home.
Employees and residents are encouraged to wash their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; if soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.
Columbia Housing is not ordering or providing facemasks at this time because the CDC specifically does not recommend that people who are well wearing a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including the disease caused by the coronavirus. Also, the U.S. Surgeon General posted a tweet on February 29 that said, "STOP BUYING MASKS! They are NOT effective in preventing the general public from catching #Coronavirus, ..."
- Hand sanitizer stations will be placed in the following locations:
- 03.04.2020: Began process of trying to procure sufficient hand sanitizer, bleach wipes, and disinfecting materials
- 03.03.2020: Issued News Release via the website and social media "What you Need to Know About Coronavirus"
- Ongoing conversations amongst staff regarding preventative measures
- 02.28.2020: Issued News Release via the website and social Media "Columbia Housing Stresses Healthy Habits Amid Coronavirus Concerns" included every day preventative measures that can be taken to avoid the virus.
"We want our staff, residents and community partners to take every precaution to remain healthy and safe," says Interim Executive Director Ivory Mathews. "Many of these healthy habits are already incorporated into our daily routines; we just need to be mindful to take extra precautions with this heightened concern about coronavirus," concludes Mathews.
- Deployed COVID-19 Task Force using principles outlined in Columbia Housing's recently adopted Emergency Preparedness Plan (adopted November 2019).
MID-LATE JANUARY & FEBRUARY
- Preparedness discussions began regarding possibilities and the need for staff to be aware and ready to act quickly if the virus begins to spread outside China
How to Make Your Own Face Covering
American Sign Language Video on COVID-19
What Older Adults Need to Know about COVID-19
6 Steps to Prevent COVID-19
10 Things to Do to Manage COVID-19 at Home