The Dancing With the Stars alum, 21, took to Instagram to address her decision after apparently receiving backlash from social media users throughout the novel viral outbreak. In her lengthy message to her almost 200,000 followers, the Parsons School of Design grad made sure to point out that her family hadn’t purchased the masks amid the pandemic.
“To everyone reaching out (very angrily) about me having a mask.. My mom is an artist and does projects that require her to wear a mask so she had a stash of them in her art studio. We didn’t buy them upon hearing about the spread of COVID-19,” Brinkley-Cook wrote in a somber Instagram Story on Wednesday, April 1. “She kept one mask for each one of our family members and then donated the rest to local hospitals. She’s been continuing to work to find supplies to help keep hospital workers safe as well.”
While defending her version of staying safe during the pandemic, she noted that her mom, Christie Brinkley, was donating a portion of her Bellissima Prosecco sales to help hospitals purchase protective equipment.
“I have one mask. My boyfriend has one mask. And we are VERY grateful to have one and are donating daily to organizations helping to create masks,” Brinkley-Cook added. “When we go to the grocery store or out on a walk we wear them so that, god forbid if we might have it and don’t know, we don’t spread it to someone less able to fight it off. Please stop sending hateful messages, and stay safe.”
While Brinkley-Cook sparked controversy for her response to the coronavirus outbreak, other celebrities like Taylor Swift and Ariana Grande have used their platforms to encourage their fans to take the developing news seriously. The “You Need to Calm Down” singer, 30, reminded her Instagram followers that they shouldn’t be hosting “get togethers and hangs and parties” during this uncertain time.
“This is the time to cancel plans, actually truly isolate as much as you can, and don’t assume that because you don’t feel sick that you aren’t possibly passing something on to someone elderly or vulnerable to this,” Swift wrote in March. “It’s a really scary time, but we need to make social sacrifices right now.”
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