Lawmakers demanding more PPE distribution throughout state

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (WWLP) – Western Massachusetts lawmakers are calling on the state for more personal protective equipment.

22News spoke with Governor Charlie Baker and Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders Wednesday on the status of PPE throughout the state.

Secretary Sudders told 22News that the process to delivering PPE is already transparent but first responders and health care facilities in western Massachusetts say they are still struggling to get their hands on masks and gloves.

The entire western Massachusetts delegation wrote a letter to the Baker Administration last week saying they lack PPE for first responders and frontline workers. After not hearing back from the governor or HHS Secretary Marylou Sudders, they sent a follow up letter to show that the problem still exists.

When questioned about the PPE shortage in western Massachusetts Secretary Sudders spoke about Springfield specifically saying, they were given 1,800 masks at the end of March though their request for more has not been met.

Mayor Sarno said Wednesday that first responders in Springfield still need N95 masks to protect themselves when they respond to calls. Sarno also said his administration is working to bring in more PPE, it is unclear what role Governor Baker or Secretary Sudders will play in that.

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