Free masks for our city’s most vulnerable people

More than 20,000 face masks have been distributed to support Sydney’s vulnerable communities during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The City of Sydney recognises the advice from NSW Health to wear masks in public, particularly where physical distancing is difficult. In order to help our vulnerable communities to comply with this advice the City is providing free reusable masks.

Our teams will be delivering 23,000 free, reusable masks to social housing residents, boarding houses and rough sleepers.

The project supports people in our more vulnerable communities who may not have the opportunity or financial ability to purchase masks.

City of Sydney Staff distributing free face masks to vulnerable communities

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the $200,000 initiative was part of the City’s commitment to work with NSW Health and help implement measures to beat Covid-19.

“When maintaining physical distancing is hard, we should all be wearing a face mask. But not everyone is able to buy them,” Lord Mayor Clover Moore said.

“The City of Sydney has purchased cloth reusable masks for the most vulnerable in our community – rough sleepers, people in social housing and boarding houses.

“The masks are made from 3 ply material and meet the guidelines produced by the World Health Organisation. We worked with an Australian manufacturer, ClothMaskMe, who provided the masks at cost price as they were keen to support such an important cause.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore giving out free masks at OzHarvest Market in Waterloo

“We are working closely with local health districts, other government agencies and relevant community organisations to ensure the masks are distributed as quickly and safely as possible.

“The City strongly supports the health advice that we should wear masks, particularly where physical distancing is difficult.

“This is an incredibly challenging time. If we are to beat Covid-19, we need to work together to ensure everyone is able to take the necessary precautions and stay safe.”

Sydney Local Health District Chief Executive, Dr Teresa Anderson, has applauded the initiative.

“We know the key ways to protect ourselves and the community are by socially distancing, sanitising or washing our hands and using masks, so we applaud this initiative by the City of Sydney.”

Dr Anderson said more than 13,000 people across Sydney and South Eastern Sydney local health districts are experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless.

The health district is running free wellness clinics in disadvantaged areas, sending nurses into boarding houses to test residents, running free influenza clinics and handing out sanitiser and masks.

See more on how we’re responding to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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