Wilton up to 70 coronavirus cases, seeks homemade masks

WILTON — As the number of cases of the coronavirus in town continues to grow, Wilton officials have put out a call for homemade cloth masks and face coverings.

Wilton is up to 70 confirmed cases of the coronavirus as of Saturday, April 4, First Selectwoman Lynne Vanderslice reported in a message on the town’s website.

In Connecticut, the latest tally was 5,276 laboratory-confirmed cases of the coronavirus, with 2,824 (53 percent) in Fairfield County. The death toll has risen to 131 statewide.

“Approximately 5 percent of total reported cases have not yet been assigned to a municipality, which is one of the reasons we have felt cases are underreported,” Vanderslice said.

She asks residents who have received a confirmed or presumptive positive test and have not been contacted by the Wilton Health Department, to contact the department by email.

In light of recommendation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to wear cloth face coverings in public, Social Services Director Sarah Heath is asking residents to assist Wilton’s seniors by dropping off homemade cloth masks in the bin in the donation shed in front of Police Headquarters behind Wilton Town Hall.

Heath, along with Wilton Helping Hands volunteers will distribute the masks.

Step-by-step directions can be found HERE on how to make (and wear) masks from materials found in the home.

The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.

CDC also advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others. Cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.

Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.

The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.