Flagstar Bank, Oakland County donate $300,000 to local sewing manufacturer to produce masks

Detroit Sewn is expected to produce 85,000 cloth masks for frontline workers

Missy McCray, The Arc of Washington County director of maintenance, works with colleagues sewing masks for other staff members Thursday, April 9, 2020, in the cafeteria at The Arc of Washington County in Hagerstown, Md. (Colleen McGrath/Herald-Mail via AP) (Colleen Mcgrath)

TROY, Mich. – Flagstar Bank announced Tuesday a $300,000 donation to a Pontiac manufacturer to produce cloth masks for health care workers amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

MORE: Michigan coronavirus (COVID-19) cases up to 32,967; Death toll now at 2,700

In partnership with Oakland County, the bank is donating the funds to the woman-owned cut and sew manufacturer Detroit Sewn. The manufacturer is expected to produce 85,000 cloth masks for local health care workers and first responders.

Officials say the masks are a washable and reusable version of disposable paper masks typically worn by health care workers and patients.

This week, 10,000 masks will be donated this week to McLaren Oakland Hospital and 3,000 masks will be delivered to police and fire departments in Ecorse, Inkster and Highland Park, officials said. The bank worked with officials in the state to determine regions with the greatest need for personal protective equipment, and are currently identifying additional distribution sites, officials said.

“We appreciate Flagstar’s support during this critical time with the commitment to provide much needed protective masks for our McLaren staff in Pontiac and Flint,” said McLaren Oakland President and CEO Margaret Dimond. “Personal protective gear is the lifeline for our staff who risk their health in caring for the critically ill COVID patients. Our partnership with Flagstar on this important initiative is quite frankly fulfilling a crucial safety essential for those on the front lines battling the virus.”

Detroit Sewn has increased from eight to 25 employees to help meet the demand for masks, officials said.


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Cassidy Johncox is a senior digital news editor covering stories across the spectrum, with a special focus on politics and community issues.