NEW BEDFORD (CBS) – New Bedford has reached a face mask milestone – 100,000 free masks handed out to residents.

“I don’t understand it. We were the first city in the United States offering masks to all of our residents for free,” said New Bedford Mayor Jon F. Mitchell, adding the effort to protect everyone would not have been possible without Joseph Abboud Manufacturing.

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The company took a big hit during the pandemic but making face masks put 750 people back to work.

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“When you see somebody with the gray MB masks, it does fill you with pride,” said Abboud Senior Vice President Joe Bahena.

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The city has another 40,000 face masks that are ready to be distributed for free.