City Steps Up with Sidewalk COVID Campaign, Provides Mask Posters for Businesses

Update: Mayor Cownie removed the mask mandate for Des Moines on Friday, May 14, 2021. Learn More

Press Release

DES MOINES, IOWA – Thursday, August 27, 2020 – On the day of Iowa’s largest number of COVID-19 cases, the City of Des Moines announced a sidewalk public service campaign to remind everyone to wear face coverings and maintain proper social distance.

Using stencils and chalk-based paint, City crews this week began applying two coronavirus messages on sidewalks throughout downtown: Be Safe, Wear a Mask and Do Your Part, Stay 6’ Apart. Crews started painting the messages and images in the East Village and will turn their efforts next week to the Court Avenue District. 

The sidewalk PSA campaign follows yesterday’s emergency proclamation by Mayor Frank Cownie mandating face coverings in public places whenever social distance cannot be maintained. Starting today, Des Moines businesses and companies can download and print a full-color door sign reminding customers and employees of the mask directive. The poster is available in English and Spanish.

According to Polk County Emergency Management, Iowa’s positive cases have been rising since August 9, and Iowa is one of only eight states with increasing activity. Iowa today reported 1,475 new positive cases for a total of 59,368. Polk County has the most in the state with 12,196.

Scientific studies show that face coverings significantly reduce the spread of the coronavirus.  That is why Des Moines two weeks ago initiated a safety campaign to provide free face coverings to residents. More than 10,000 were distributed through Des Moines Parks and Recreation, Des Moines Public Library, DART, Blank Park Zoo, YMCA of Greater Des Moines, Central Iowa Shelter & Services, Des Moines Botanical Garden as well as various community and faith-based organizations.

Des Moines Police have also purchased 10,000 face coverings for officers to distribute to the public. “We prefer handing out masks to writing citations,” said Des Moines Police Chief Dana Wingert.

Al Setka
Communications Manager, City Manager’s Office 
(515) 283-4057

About the City of Des Moines
The City of Des Moines: Iowa’s capital city and local government servicing more than 217,000 residents, 51+ neighborhoods, over 4,000 acres of parkland and 81 miles of trails. The City of Des Moines stands to be a financially strong city with exceptional city services, fostering an involved community in a customer friendly atmosphere. Visit DSM.cityFacebook and Twitter for more information.