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Leon County helps businesses by providing free masks

Published: Jul. 7, 2020 at 6:48 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Almost two weeks into the Leon County mask mandate, some Tallahassee businesses say it’s becoming a ‘new normal’ for employees and customers.

"I think most people want to be considerate of other people. I think most people don't wear masks for themselves, it might not really matter to me but I don't want someone else to get sick," said Liz Snowden.

Snowden owns Lucky and Charmed in Tallahassee. She says, for the most part, customers wear one without being asked.

Now, not only are masks mandatory in businesses in Leon County, they’re also part of the inventory.

"They kind of are flying off the shelf," Snowden said. "I think people realize that if we need to wear them all of the time, they need to be able to wash them, wear them safely, and it's fun to have one that matches your outfit."

Snowden has made more than 3,000 masks, also donating them to local organizations.

Leon County officials say personal protective equipment is still one of the biggest concerns for local businesses.

That’s why the Tallahassee-Leon County Office of Economic Vitality is giving out 100,000 free reusable masks to businesses and organizations.

OEV Director Christina Paredes says the office sends out a survey to local businesses every four to six weeks to learn more about their top priorities. When they received the 100,000 masks from the state, she says it was that survey that directed county officials what to do with them.

"We heard from our last survey, done about the third week of June, that personal protective equipment was still a top priority, and by handing out the masks we're helping businesses reach that top concern of theirs," Paredes said. "This is to help equip and protect our local businesses, their employees and their customers."

Bags are filled with one hundred cloth masks. They are available to businesses, non-profits and religious organizations.

They will be available at each local chamber, as well as the OEV office until all 100,000 are gone. The initiative began Tuesday, and county officials say more than 7,000 were given out in just one day.

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