NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Help is coming for more than 1,200 people who need coats in Queens.

Boxes and bags of coats have been donated at local businesses and is being distributed through churches, shelters and family outreach centers.

Sen. Jose Peralta helped organize the coat drive and explained to CBS2 why it is so important.

“People really can’t afford a coat and now, especially now during the winter months, the early winter months where temperatures are falling to single digits, we need to make sure that people have coats,” Peralta said.

The coat drive has been an annual event since 2011 and is growing bigger each year.

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