As the weather gets warmer and the city inches closer to a full reopening, it’s easy to forget that we’re still in the grips of a pandemic. The executive order Governor Cuomo enacted on April 17 requiring New Yorkers to don a mask or bandana when “when out in public and in situations where social distancing cannot be maintained” is still in effect. Although the rate of confirmed COVID-19 infections in New York City is in decline, wearing a face covering is one of the precautions necessary to prevent a spike in new cases.
Plus, it’s easier than ever to find a mask: As more shops begin to restart business, the city’s Department of Small Business Services and Department of Consumer and Worker Protection have teamed up with various organizations to make sure people keep their droplets to themselves; they are providing two million free face coverings to small businesses and their employees.
If you’re a small-business owner who would like to get hooked up with free masks for your workers, this map will help you find the closest pickup site. Supplies are limited to five masks per employee, but additional non-medical PPE can be purchased from one of the vendors listed in this spreadsheet compiled by the city.
So, although summer is kicking into high gear and we’re all itching to get outside and catch some rays, it doesn’t mean we can be cavalier when it comes to covering our noses and mouths when going out.