SAHA Takes Measures to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

SAHA Takes Measures to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

The San Antonio Housing Authority (SAHA) is prioritizing the health and safety of our communities and we are ensuring the well-being of our residents and staff. As the outbreak of COVID-19, commonly known as the novel coronavirus, continues to impact the San Antonio area, SAHA is taking additional precautionary measures to limit in-person interactions and has implemented all steps recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

SAHA has taken proactive measures to clean and disinfect all its public housing properties, including conducting deep cleaning of each property. SAHA has encouraged residents to adhere to CDC guidance including social distancing, hand washing and monitoring potential symptoms.

Residents and partners can continue to call, email or submit inquiries online.

UPDATE ON EVICTIONS

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDD) has banned evictions through the end of the year for renters as COVID-19 continues to impact the nation.

While SAHA is not charging fees or penalties to its public housing residents,  other landlords including those of Section 8 residents can still charge and collect rent and associated fees and penalties under the terms in the lease. 

The eviction banned until the year does not forgive rent. Renters are still required to pay all back rent and are encouraged to make timely partial payments if their income has been impacted. The City of San Antonio also provides rental assistance here. In addition, SAHA offers payment plans to residents. 

Please note residents may still be evicted for the following: 

  • Engaging in criminal activity on the premises; 

  • Threatening the health or safety of other residents; 

  • Damaging or posing an immediate and significant risk of damage to property; 

  • Violating any applicable building code, health ordinance, or similar regulation relating to health and safety; or 

  • Violating any other contractual obligation (other than late fees, penalties, or interest). 

IF YOU’RE A PUBLIC HOUSING RESIDENT

Effective April 10, and until further notice:

  • Non-essential visitors to all SAHA properties are discouraged. For elderly and disabled properties, non-essential visitors will be denied entry. Only essential visitors such as medical or food providers and one family member will be allowed to visit elderly and disabled properties. Personnel will be stationed at SAHA’s elderly and disabled mid and high-rise properties to screen essential visitors entering the buildings.

Effective Monday, March 16, and until further notice:

  • Notices to Vacate and lease violations have been suspended. Exceptions are those impacting the health and safety of our residents. SAHA will issue lease violations to residents who are identified as impacting the health and safety of others during the pandemic.

  • Evictions for non criminal activity have been suspended

  • Transfers, move-ins, move-outs have been suspended

  • Routine work orders have been suspended

  • Housekeeping inspections have been suspended

  • Late fees have been suspended

  • All resident activities, including Resident Council and Youth Activities, have been suspended

  • Property management offices and community rooms have been suspended

  • Metro Health is continuing its city nutrition program at elderly properties and allowing food to be taken into units 

  • Emergency work orders will require additional troubleshooting via phone calls

  • Existing repayment agreements will be extended

  • Recertification deadlines will be extended

  • Rent payments should be made either online or by mail

  • Pest control services will be conducted on the exterior of buildings and common areas

  • Pest control services will temporarily be suspended in residents units

IF YOU’RE A HOUSING CHOICE VOUCHERS (SECTION 8) RESIDENT

Beginning Monday, March 16, and until further notice:

  • Recertification deadlines will be extended

  • The Section 8 lobby at Central Office is closed

  • Inspections have been suspended

  • Terminations have been suspended

  • Issuance of vouchers for current and new clients have been suspended

  • Moves and portabilities have been suspended

  • Landlord payments will continue to be processed but delays may occur

  • Since Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) tenants have leasing agreements with private landlords, SAHA has no authority to suspend notices to vacate nor evictions in the private sector.

Residents are encouraged to call SAHA’s Resident Hotline at 210.477.6999 for the latest information or follow SAHA’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.

IF A COVID-19 INFECTION OCCURS AT A SAHA COMMUNITY

The San Antonio Metropolitan Health District (SAMHD) will provide residents with further guidance, including instructions on self quarantine in the event of a widespread exposure at a SAHA property. Only SAMHD can provide this confirmation. 

IF YOUR INCOME CHANGES

If your job has been impacted by COVID-19, here is what you can do if your income changes:

Report the change to SAHA within 10 days of your income changing by completing a “Change of Income” Packet.

Public Housing residents can email completed packet to phchanges@saha.org, their property manager or mail packets to:
San Antonio Housing Authority
ATTN: Public Housing
818 S. Flores St., San Antonio, TX 78204

VIEW PACKET

Voucher Program (Section 8) residents can email completed packet to hcvchanges@saha.org or mail completed packets to:
San Antonio Housing Authority
ATTN: Housing Choice Vouchers
818 S. Flores St., San Antonio, TX 78204

VIEW PACKET

YOU CAN ALSO:

  • Apply for Unemployment benefits online to receive temporary assistance.

  • Contact your property manager or landlord and discuss payment arrangements. You are still required to pay your rent as outlined in your lease.

  • For free one-on-one financial counseling to help with budgeting or debt management, call the City of San Antonio Financial Empowerment Center at 210.206.5372.

IF YOU NEED HELP PAYING YOUR WATER AND LIGHT BILLS

CPS Energy and SAWS are suspending disconnections during the COVID-19 outbreak. However, you are still required to pay your monthly bills. In addition to the help listed above, you can:

IF YOU NEED WI-FI

Spectrum is offering free Internet for 60 days to qualifying families with students K–12 or college students who do not already have service. Call 1-844-488-8395 for more information or to enroll.

IF YOU FEEL SICK

If you are feeling sick or have symptoms related to the coronavirus, here are some ways to seek medical attention.

TAKE A SELF SCREENING TEST

The City of San Antonio launched a new COVID-19 self-screening tool. The test is available in English and Spanish

The new self-screening tool includes nine questions about any symptoms and risk factors you might be experiencing. After completing the screening, you will be given instructions on how to proceed.

IF YOU ARE RECEIVING MEDICARE 

United Healthcare has a 24/7 hotline available to Medicare recipients to call for information on COVID-19, where to be tested, and how to have a testing co-pay waived.

Call Angela Trinidad at 210.385.5532 for more information.

IF YOU NEED A DOCTOR’S APPROVAL

Residents who believe they have been exposed to the virus and have symptoms, should call their physician or an urgent care clinic for an assessment for a testing referral. 

Those who cannot afford a doctor’s visit may call Metro Health’s COVID-19 hotline at 210.207.5779. Visit Metro Health for more information.

Full list of resources

IF YOU NEED FOOD

If you need food to help feed yourself and your family:

  • The San Antonio Food Bank continues to host food distributions throughout the city. The Food Bank is requiring pre-registration for anyone wanting to attend to avoid a shortage of supplies. Call 210.431.8326 to attend a food distribution or have food delivered to your home.

  • Call Catholic Charities at 210.226.6178 to make an appointment to visit their food pantry and clothes closet. Catholic Charities also have a mobile unit to help residents who are immobile. 

IF YOU NEED CHILDREN ACTIVITIES

With school closures through May, you may find yourself needing activities to help keep your children entertained or educated. Below are some free resources for you:

  • Find a daily art lesson here.

  • Don’t forget, as a Bexar County resident, you can rent e-books from BiblioTech, San Antonio’s all-digital library.

STAY INFORMED

Public health officials are readily available and sharing information often. 

City of San Antonio Metro Health  
sanantonio.gov/COVID19 | COVID-19 Hotline: 210.207.5779

TX Department of Health and Human Services 
dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus

COVID-19 Hotline 
1.877.570.9779

Text for Updates
Text COSAGOV to 55000 to receive text message updates

Ready South Texas App
Download the Ready South Texas App to receive updates on COVID-19.

Thank you in advance for your patience, understanding, flexibility and care you give each other and to our residents. SAHA hopes the changes outlined above will protect our staff and residents and help minimize the virus impact on the larger San Antonio community.