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Counties work to get masks off their hands and onto residents’ faces

Published: Dec. 28, 2021 at 5:38 PM EST
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - St. Lawrence County is working to get thousands of masks from the state off their hands and on to the faces of residents. Jefferson County received some as well and is drawing up its distribution plan.

Boxes of KN95 masks are stacked up in St. Lawrence County. Director of Emergency Services Matthew Denner says the county received 48,000 from the state to hand out to the community.

Some can make a request on the county’s website.

“I believe pick up is at the courthouse in Canton,” said Denner.

He says supplies are first come, first serve.

“Once they’re gone, the portal will be closed,” said Denner.

He adds that the majority of the masks are going to various towns and villages, so the easiest way to get one is to reach out to your local government.

“Town offices, village offices, city hall and contact them on point of pick up and distribution,” said Denner.

Jefferson County received 51,000 KN95s from the state. According to officials at Emergency Management, a distribution plan is in the works.

County Public Health Planner Faith Lustik says these specific masks are a step above the rest.

“They are so much better than just cloth masks. They really can protect,” she said.

Jefferson County is also expecting to receive a number of take-home test kits from the state to distribute to the community. Lustik says it’s important for people who test positive at home to report their results quickly to public health.

“So we can do that contact tracing. Stop the spread of it,” she said.

County leaders say they’re still waiting for those tests to arrive.

And as for Lewis County, there’s no word yet on if it received any KN95 masks from the state or it it’s expecting take-home test kits.

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