SARTELL -- Governor Tim Walz made a stop in Sartell Tuesday praising the efforts of local non-profits.

The Central Minnesota Council on Aging, in partnership with the state, is one of several community organizations distributing 400,000 cloth masks to older adults.

Walz says with many of the state's older adults in isolation since the pandemic began, a reusable mask can help get them back into society.

One of the ways we can stop some of that isolation for our seniors and keeping them safe is making sure everyone has a mask, including seniors amongst themselves.

Lori Vrolson is the Executive Director for the Central Minnesota Council on Aging. She says they will distribute roughly 7,500 masks to organizations they work with, such as Catholic Charities, to make sure the masks get to where they are needed.

We will be working with those providers to get the masks out. We have several provider partners who have been unable to resume services since COVID because of lack of PPE. These masks will be a first step to restart those services.

Vrolson says residents can also call the Senior Linkage Line to request a mask, and one will be mailed out to you.

Last month, the state distributed nearly 4 million masks to businesses, their customers, and people who are unable to afford a mask or easily obtain one to help limit the spread of COVID-19.

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