Friedman's Helps Provide Masks For Sonoma County Medical Workers

Maggie Fusek

This article originally appeared on the Petaluma Patch

SONOMA COUNTY, CA — In addition to remaining open for customers' essential needs during the coronavirus public health crisis, Petaluma-based Friedman's Home Improvement stores is also working to provide desperately needed N95 masks for the local healthcare community.

Friedman's, which has three Sonoma County stores in Petaluma, Sonoma and Santa Rosa, and a Mendocino County store in Ukiah, sourced 4,000 masks through its vendors that were then purchased this week by Kaiser Permanente and St. Joseph’s.

Additionally, Friedman’s is donating 5,000 masks to hospitals and community health centers in the two counties it serves.

While the shelter-at-home orders are in effect for Sonoma County and the state of California, Friedman's hours are adjusted and only 30 customers are allowed in each store at a time.

"Our business is classified as 'an essential business' under the Sonoma County Shelter in Place Order, providing access to products for maintaining the safety, sanitation and essential operation of a residence," Friedman's says on its website. "If our customers need to restock on essential supplies for their homes, or keep their businesses running, we are open for them."

Friedman's is currently open 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays, and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends but recommends customers check its website prior to visiting in case its hours change.

The home-improvement store has expanded its cleaning procedures, has closed nursery entrances, is encouraging the use of drive-thru yards, and is reinforcing safe social distances of 6 feet or more.

This message is from owner Barry Friedman:

"We recognize this is a strange and intense time for all of us. Anxiety, uncertainty and isolation are just some of the feelings we may be experiencing. I want you to know we recognize this and have the health and safety of you and our Team Members as our highest priorities.
"As the Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread throughout the country, we are closely monitoring the recommendations from both the CDC and local health officials.
"Every step of the way we are committed to the physical and financial health and wellbeing of all of us in our communities. ... "
Above all, we are working to support our neighbors, teams, and their families. We are striving to provide every Team Member the support and stability needed now and for the long term.
I ask you to join me in following the guidance of our healthcare community, making the short term sacrifices that keep our neighbors safe as we provide essential products and services for our communities.
Know that no matter what, we will be together every step of the way.Until then, stay safe, love each other, and go wash your hands."