The Occitanie region and the Haute-Garonne department have announced a joint order for 1.4 million washable textile masks for the inhabitants of the department.
1.4 million cloth masks for the inhabitants of Haute-Garonne. It is the result of a joint order carried by the Occitanie region and the departmental council of Haute-Garonne. This should allow each inhabitant of the department to have their own cloth mask, including for the inhabitants of Toulouse and the Metropolis.
Washable up to thirty times
These masks, washable up to thirty times, are purchased at the price of 2 euros per piece by the two local authorities. And they do not come from the other side of the world: three French workshops (in Tarn, Lot and Allier ) were asked to manufacture them as well as a workshop in Italy.
In a joint press release, Carole Delga, President of the Region and Georges Méric, President of the Departmental Council explain:
It seems to us to be a priority to ensure the equality of all citizens, of all territories, concerning this equipment in masks, essential to organize a deconfinement in total health security. For our young people, middle school and high school students, for employees, for our agents, for our traders, for our elders … This deconfinement must be prepared with seriousness and composure. Pending the state plan, our communities are working on it in a coordinated and complementary manner.
Discussions are currently underway to define the distribution methods for these masks.
Protect the population
“Our first priority is more than ever to protect the population”, specify the two elected officials, who believe “to take responsibility in the face of the persistent shortage of masks on the national territory “.
Carole Delga and Georges Méric also point out that many local authorities have started to order masks, to mobilize sewing workshops, to appeal for donations…:
“While this is the primary competence of the State, these actions are to be welcomed but they do not guarantee the equipment of each and every one of our inhabitants.”
Exceptional aid requested from the State
It is, therefore, to ensure this equality in the face of masks to all citizens, that the two local authorities have placed this joint order. On Twitter, the President of the Occitania Region did not hesitate to recall that this order did not, however, fall within the competences of local authorities, by requesting exceptional assistance from the Head of State:
En @Occitanie, plus de 24 millions de masques ont été commandés par les collectivités locales pr pallier les carences de l’État et fournir hôpitaux et population.
Je demande à @EmmanuelMacron une aide exceptionnelle pour financer ces achats qui ne relèvent pas de nos compétences.
— Carole Delga (@CaroleDelga) April 23, 2020
In all, the Occitanie Region bought 6 million masks for all the departments of its territory.
Already masks for professionals
This order for 1.4 million masks for the general public is not the first to be placed by the Regional Council and the Departmental Council. The Haute-Garonne had thus spent a bulk order of a million masks FFP2 for community health staff. The Region, for its part, had bought six million masks for hospitals.