MIAMI – City of Miami officials distributed face masks Friday to areas that have been identified as coronavirus hot spots, including Allapattah, Brownsville and Little Havana.
“I’m unemployed. I need to get everything that I can get free because of the necessity of the pandemic,” Lourdes Garcia said.
Garcia and her son waited among dozens of others to get masks Friday morning.
They said they’re grateful for both the mask mandate and the distribution, especially as we’re seeing younger South Floridians requiring hospitalization.
“I see people walking without masks, walking dogs in the park, in the street. Kids are vulnerable,” she said.
Neighborhoods like Miami’s little Havana are now seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases.
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez distributed 10,000 masks to the long line of eager recipients waiting in the heat.
Shortly after speaking to us, one woman in line fainted in the heat prior to the mayor’s arrival.
City staff members handed out water bottles as people waited.
As of Thursday, masks are now required in the city of Miami to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and there are consequences for noncompliance.
“The first instance, it’s a warning. The second instance, it’s a $50 fine. The third instance, it’s a $150 fine and a fourth, it’s a $500 fine, and it could ultimately be an arrestable offense after that,” the mayor said.
The city of Miami has received more than 100,000 masks to pass out so far, and is expecting more donations.