Every Utahn Is Getting a Mask

State announces initiative that will also keep locals employed
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 29, 2020 12:33 AM CDT
Every Utahn Is Getting a Mask
Utah Gov. Gary Herbert speaks during a news conference announcing that Utah-based Merit Medical is now making a coronavirus sample and collection kit at its facility Tuesday, April 21, 2020, in South Jordan, Utah.   (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Every single member of Utah's population of more than 3 million will have a mask as the state wages its battle against the coronavirus. Gov. Gary Herbert announced the "A Mask for Every Utahn" initiative Tuesday, KPCW reports. Federal funding provided through the CARES act will be used to purchase 2 million reusable face coverings, which will be provided free to residents of the state who apply for one. Officials urged residents who already own a mask not to apply for a free one. Masks will also be distributed via nonprofits, and grocery and convenience stores. Another benefit of the initiative: It will keep 200 Utahns employed, as 20 local companies are helping to produce the masks. (More coronavirus stories.)

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