Free N95 Masks Distributed at Montgomery County Libraries | WDVM25 and DCW50

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WDVM) – Last week, Montgomery County began distributing rapid tests to libraries and on Friday also began distributing N95 masks to the community.

County Executive March Elrich said the county plans to distribute millions of N95 masks to residents, but he and residents are disappointed with the provision of rapid tests.

“Immediately, we are concerned that we will not be able to have enough test kits after the next two weeks,” Elrich said. “Because if our supplies are really cut off, we’ll wait to see what the feds do.”

“I assumed they ran out of everything because it wasn’t a long queue at all, so I’m excited to have a new type of mask, which is supposed to be very safe,” said Montgomery County resident Beth Greenfield. “And we could have gotten rid of this thing two years ago if everyone had been wearing masks.”

During the pandemic, libraries played a different role. Still, the director of the White Oak library says it’s the library’s job to be the only local government institution that touches every resident. She also says it’s just another way to serve their community.

“It seems like a good fit. We’re good at organizing, people know where we are, we have the ability here to do that,” said Kathy Meizne, Library Manager of White Oak Library. “And it’s been quite a rewarding experience.”

Since the rapid tests began being distributed to libraries, nearly 800,000 have been distributed so far. Residents can purchase 4 N95 masks per person from any of the county’s 19 libraries. Supplies are limited and masks will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

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