New York City has led the nation in coronavirus infection rates and now the city is leading the way in setting protocols that might be the new normal across the country, including offering free masks at its parks.
With a new mandate requiring the use of masks in public spaces, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Monday said that 7.5 million face masks will be distributed at more than 50 designated sites across Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx and Staten Island.
"Wherever you turn, you're going to be offered a face covering," de Blasio said during a news conference, according to Newsweek, saying the initiative will be carried out over the course of several weeks to come.
In a message on Twitter, de Blasio's press secretary Freddi Goldstein reiterated information shared at the news conference, noting that New York City's public and affordable housing facilities, meal distribution locales, public parks and grocery stores are among the sites where face coverings will be made available.
New York governor Andrew Cuomo has repeatedly reinforced the message that masks benefit society.
"You don't wear a mask for yourself. You wear a mask to protect me. I wear a mask to protect you," the governor said. "We owe each other a certain amount of reasonableness and respect in society. And I owe you that level of respect."