Often, locals have masks with them but keep them in their bags and only put them on when entering an establishment.
The Red Cross of San Miguel de Allende has joined the citizenship campaign Póntelo Ya (Put it on Already!) to encourage locals and visitors alike to wear masks, and since May 1, the city of San Miguel has been urging people to wear masks in all public spaces—a requirement that gained momentum when the State of Guanajuato certified it as an official ordinance on July 10. The city has imposed fines for not using masks, ranging from 1500 pesos to up to 36 hours in custody.
However, according to City Auditor Verónica Agundis, the goal is not to fine people, but rather to raise awareness that the rule is important, as demonstrated by restaurant owners, citizens, and civil organizations.
Teaming up with Masks 4 U and COVID-19 SMA—a nonprofit group dedicated to providing health care resources and information about COVID-19 to the San Miguel community—the Red Cross recently took to the streets to distribute 600 masks to the community. Atención joined them on the route that went from Plaza Cívica to Mercado San Juan de Dios, and on to Plaza Luciérnaga.
Leticia Fernández, president of the Red Cross, and her paramedics, offered cloth masks to those who were using disposable ones and to those who had no masks. In many cases the women thanked them but said they already had a mask—inside their purses. Men who wore no mask often pointed to their pants pocket or said they had left it in the car. Many were carrying their masks in their hands. Paramedics offered to put the masks on for those who did not know how to do it properly.
The masks that were distributed had been delivered to the Red Cross by Masks 4 U and COVID-19 SMA, which to date have delivered nearly 15,000 free masks to the people of San Miguel.
According to Jessica Frick, a registered nurse from the United States who represents COVID-19 SMA, the locally crafted masks were made according to World Health Organization guidelines and constructed with three layers—polyester, polypropylene, and cotton.