Six thousand free face masks to be given to Perry residents

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Modeling the face masks to be given away free starting Saturday are, from left, DMACC Perry VanKirk Career Academy Director Eddie Diaz, Perry Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lynsi Pasutti and Dallas County EMS Director Mike Thomason.

Perry City Administrator Sven Peterson models the face masks to be given away free starting Saturday.

Six thousand anti-virus face masks will be given away free to Perry-area residents starting Saturday thanks to the fundraising efforts of some local Perry community members and the generosity of some local Perry businesses.

The fundraising committee — composed of Dallas County EMS Director Mike Thomason, Perry Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lynsi Pasutti, DMACC Perry VanKirk Career Academy Director Eddie Diaz and Perry City Administrator Sven Peterson — has raised enough money to buy 6,000 masks from TC&B Corporate Wearables, and the masks will be distributed to Perry residents at no cost.

The masks will be distributed at the following times and places:

  • Saturday 10 a.m.-1 p.m.: Fareway parking lot
  • Sunday 1-4 p.m.: Hy-Vee parking lot
  • Monday 10:30 a.m.-noon: Perry Elementary School and Perry High School
  • Monday 4-7 p.m.: Perry Public Library
  • Tuesday 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: Perry Food Pantry

Also starting Saturday, the following local businesses will have a limited supply of free face masks available to the public: Ben’s Five and Dime, Perry Perk, Mex-To-U restaurant, Oasis Market, El Rey Market, Tin Pig and Blue Jay Market.

“COVID-19 is spread through droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or speaks,” said Dallas County EMS Director Mike Thomason. “Masks help catch these droplets and help stop the transmission. We understand that this is not 100% effective to stop transmission, but it is helpful when paired with other measures.”

Various groups from the Perry area have come together to help supply medical personnel with personal protective equipment (PPE) over the last few weeks, with hundreds of items  donated to the Dallas County Hospital, Dallas County EMS and our local long-term care facilities.

The fundraising committee members extended its thanks to the city of Perry, Osmundson Manufacturing and DMACC for their generous support as well as TC&B Corporate Wearables for their innovative transition to manufacturing masks.

“This call to action is less about protecting the individual wearing it and more about protecting others,” the committee said. “If everyone does their part, together we can.”

Community members are encouraged to visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website for more guidance on the use of cloth masks and to post pictures in support of this campaign by using the hashtag #weareperry.

Masks are only effective when used correctly. All distancing practices should be continued as possible, even when using a mask.
1️⃣ Wash your hands before putting on your mask
2️⃣ Cover your nose, mouth, and chin snuggly with the mask
3️⃣ Do not touch your mask while wearing it. This transfers the germs you caught in the mask onto your hands. Wash your hands anytime you touch your mask
4️⃣ Replace your mask as soon as it becomes damp. Remove it from behind without touching the front or inside of the mask
5️⃣ Homemade cloth masks can be washed with soap and water in the washing machine and re-used. You should wash the mask in between uses
6️⃣ Wash you hands after removing your mask and placing it in the wash.

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