Oregon Inmates churn out cloth masks

SALEM – Oregon prison inmates are making masks to protect against the spread of coronavirus.

Oregon Corrections Enterprises has four sewing operations around the state

“They were actually able to shift over fairly well,” Oregon Corrections Enterprises Communications and Program Manager Jennifer Starbuck said. “I would say within a week.”

Starbuck said they’re making masks that are not medical grade for use by inmates and guards.  They’d like to get FDA approval to start making them for hospitals.

“That’s been the biggest piece, sourcing the correct material to get them certified,” she said.

They can make around 2,000 masks a day.  Starbuck said they hope to have around 100,000 masks made by the end of the month.