April 13, 2020
Las Vegas, N.M. – A group of quilters in Las Vegas joined forces to make face masks for the New Mexico Highlands University Police Department and others in the community.
The Tea Time Quilters group made and donated the colorful cotton protective masks that Highlands police and security officers are wearing on patrol around campus when they interact with people.
“We’re so happy and immensely grateful that this group of quilters stepped up to the plate and provided these masks,” said Clarence Romero, chief of police at Highlands. “Las Vegas always comes together during these types of emergencies. It was the same after the historic flood in 2013. Our community takes care of its own.”
The Tea Time Quilters made the mask donation to Highlands April 10. Laura Cole, Antonia Keuffer and Alberta Vigil are the local quilters who made the masks.
“I have a friend who works in the Highlands Police Department who said they needed reusable cloth masks and I was really happy we could supply them,” Cole said. “We saw the need on the front lines, and it was rewarding to help.”
Romero said the cloth masks are meant to be worn and then washed each day. Each of his 12 officers got at least one mask. He said the donation was timely.
“We’d been looking for reusable cloth masks, but the order was going to take six weeks,” Romero said.
Romero said the Highlands Police Department has the proper personal protective equipment, or PPE, to respond to incidents that might be related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“These are the disposable medical N95 masks and full protective suits made by Tyvex that are also disposable after being used,” Romero said.