Free non-medical masks to be available at Alberta drive-thrus

Millions of non-medical masks now available to all Albertans

Shandro said that starting in early June, people will be able to use drive-thru lanes at McDonald's, A&W and Tim Hortons to pick up single use, three-layer, non-medical masks created to filter germs and pollution particles. "Our restaurants across the province have been quick to step up and help organize the distribution of masks, and are looking forward to welcoming Albertans at our drive-thrus", said Susan Senecal, president and CEO of A&W Canada.

Masks will only be available via drive-thrus, and only while supplies last.

Albertans are encouraged to remain at least two metres away from other people while in public and to wear a mask when that isn't possible, like when riding transit or in a grocery store.

"This program will help Albertans get back to work and enjoy every-day activities safely as we all continue to work together to prevent the spread of COVID-19 throughout our province", he said.

"Using the drive-thrus for distribution also ensures physical distancing can be maintained because people stay in their vehicles when picking up the masks".

Asked how he hopes to prevent hoarding, Shandro said, "We're not asking for folks to bring in their health-care card and get it punched to show they've already picked up".

The province is working on a distribution system for communities that don't have drive-thrus.

The mask distribution program is meant to supplement an Albertan's efforts to acquire non-medical masks.

"Mask use is not mandatory, but we would like Albertans to have the option of wearing a mask if they choose". "This allotment of four masks should be considered a supplement to store-bought or homemade masks", said Shandro.

Tanya Doucette, who owns eight Tim Hortons restaurants in central Alberta, said she sees the program as a way to give back to the community.

The Province of Alberta has partnered with fast food companies throughout the province to provide Albertans with 20 million free non-medical masks.

He said it's acceptable for people to pick up masks on behalf of those who can't do so in person.

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