The YMCA-YWCA of Guelph has opened its doors to truck drivers.
From 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. each day it will be allowing truck drivers to come inside and use its facilities to take a shower and use the bathroom.
“The Guelph Y is not alone in this,” says CEO Geoff Vogt on the Guelph Y web site. “The nation-wide response to COVID-19 has left everyone reconsidering ‘normal,’ especially in terms of work. For us, it means working from home and offering a variety of services and programs online. And, starting today, it also means becoming a safe space to stop and practice hygiene for long haul truck drivers.”
The project is in collaboration with Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health.
“Hearing that rest stops were closed to them and knowing we’re such a short distance from the 401 – with both east-bound and west-bound exits, it made sense to us. We’re relying on truck drivers to deliver our essential services; this is our way of providing them access to a clean and accessible space to take care of themselves as they work to provide for us.”
Measures put in place to ensure everyone’s safety include self-screening (drivers need to be symptom free), increased hand sanitizing stations and drivers having to call the Y to be let in, with no more than 15 drivers allowed in the facility at one time.
A limited number of showers and bathrooms will be open with increased cleaning procedures followed.
“As a charity with a service mindset, the Y has a legacy of responding to community needs,” said Vogt. “Our Y has the facilities and the ability to meet the need of this particular group. It just makes sense that we would do so.”