3/20/20 - Message to Providers from Secretary Hou: COVID-19

Friday, March 20th, 2020

Dear Partners,

Today, Governor Pritzker issued a Stay at Home Executive Order that will go into effect tomorrow at 5:00 p.m. I want to share with you what this means for IDHS and our community partners and to provide some guidance for your organizations. Further, we are pleased to announce additional resources that IDHS will deploy across the state to ensure the health and safety of people who are experiencing homeless.

Illinois' Stay at Home Order does not alter the current operations, budget principles, or any of the recent guidance that you have received from IDHS Divisions and programs.

Our Division Directors and their staff may be sending out additional information in light of the new Stay at Home Order. However, the Order is not intended to amend the current practices of IDHS programs and services. IDHS programs and services are covered under Essential Services that include Human Services Operations and Health Care Operations.

As a reminder, IDHS has temporarily closed its on-site local Rehabilitation Services' (DRS) offices and scaled down staffing levels at its on-site Family and Community Resource Center (FCRCs) local offices to align with the health and safety guidance by public health officials. Services are still available.

Finally, I am pleased to share that IDHS is making $6 million available throughout the state for isolation housing for people experiencing homelessness through local Continuums of Care. IDHS is also increasing existing homeless service providers' funding by 5% to increase capacity during this crisis.

We continue to welcome feedback from our provider community and encourage comments, questions, or concerns to be sent to dhs.covid19@illinois.gov.

More information about COVID-19 is available at CoronaVirus.Illinois.Gov and through the COVID-19 Hotline, at 1-800-889-3931.

Thank you, again, for all that you do.


Grace B. Hou

Secretary, IDHS