KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Jackson County officials announced Tuesday that 100,000 masks will be given away to Jackson County residents to help stop the spread of COVID-19. The county will be partnering with churches around the county to host giveaways in multiple communities.
“Wearing a mask has been shown to slow the spread of this deadly disease and will ultimately save lives. Therefore, it is critical that we remove any barriers that could prevent people from wearing them – whether it be cost, accessibility or availability,” said Jackson County Executive Frank White.
Jackson County Legislator Ron Finley said COVID-19 is still spreading in the county and they encourage everyone to wear a mask consistent with the health order to protect themselves and the public.
“Doing so will help keep our community safe, strong and open for business,” Finley said. “I appreciate the support of the County Executive, Legislators and Governor Parson on this project. We are all in this together.”
The first giveaway takes place Wednesday, July 15, at the Grain Valley Community Center, 713 N. Main Street, from 3:30 – 5:30 p.m. Each person will receive 10 disposable masks during the drive-thru distribution until the supply of 15,000 lasts.
Details for future mask distributions will be announced on Jackson County’s website and social media platforms.
Local public health directors and hospital officials say wearing a face mask is the most effective and least costly strategy to slow the spread of COVID-19. Combined with social distancing, masks limit the release of infected droplets when talking, coughing and sneezing. So far, more than 3,600 people have been infected with the virus and 78 people have died in all of Jackson County.
“The science is clear that when we wear masks, we limit the spread of droplets being passed on to others when we talk, cough or sneeze,” said Jackson County Health Department Director Bridgette Shaffer, MPH. “We need compliance with the order to best control the virus. Mask wearing is one of the simplest and least invasive tools we have to protect our families, friends, and neighbors in Jackson County.”
Currently, Jackson County is in Phase 2.5 of its recovery plan which requires a mask to be worn in public indoor and public outdoor spaces.