Bell acquires 1.5 million protective face masks to support frontline healthcare and other essential public workers throughout Canada
Masks are being donated to federal, provincial and territorial governments for distribution to every region of the country
MONTRÉAL, April 17, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ - Bell today announced it has acquired approximately 1.5 million protective face masks to help equip more healthcare and other frontline public workers throughout Canada in the fight against COVID-19. The N95 and KN95 masks are being donated to the federal, provincial and territorial governments for distribution in every region of the country.
"Healthcare professionals, first responders and public servants of all kinds are working courageously to keep Canadians safe and well as our country copes with COVID-19, and many have been facing shortages of the protective equipment they need to do their jobs safely and effectively," said Mirko Bibic, President and CEO of BCE Inc. and Bell Canada. "Bell is proud to put our scale and global reach to work to help protect the people on the front lines of public health and safety with this donation."
Leveraging its global procurement network to source personal protective equipment (PPE) for its own team members doing critical communications work, Bell was able to acquire an additional 1.5 million high-quality N95 and KN95 face masks, valued at approximately $7.5 million, through multiple logistics partners.
Bell is delivering the masks to the federal, provincial and (in partnership with Bell's Northern Canada subsidiary Northwestel) territorial governments to enable rapid distribution to priority targets including healthcare providers, first responders and other essential departments and agencies supporting the public during COVID-19.
"Since the COVID-19 situation began, Bell has been guided by 2 principles: the dedication of all our resources to ensuring we keep Canadians connected and informed throughout the crisis, and doing everything possible to ensure the health and safety of our customers, the public and the Bell team," said Mr. Bibic. "Using Bell's reach and resources to help to protect the many Canadians facing the public health impact on the front lines fits very well with our focus on getting us all through this crisis together."
This donation is the latest Bell initiative to help support our communities through the COVID-19 crisis:
- Bell Let's Talk recently increased its mental health funding by $5 million in response to COVID-19 including immediate donations supporting front line response and urgent youth and family services to the Canadian Red Cross, Canadian Mental Health Association, Kids Help Phone, Revivre and Strongest Families Institute.
- Bell Mobility is supporting hospitals, shelters and social agencies requiring emergency mobile communications services in every region with complimentary phones and airtime.
- Bell Let's Talk supported partner Kids Help Phone in the launch of Wellness Together Canada, a new Government of Canada online portal for mental health resources, and also worked with the Mental Health Commission of Canada, Strongest Families Institute and Morneau Shepell to launch WellCan, another online hub for mental health resources.
- Bell Media joins top broadcasters around the world in delivering the One World: Together at Home virtual international benefit concert on Saturday April 18. Bell Media's earlier broadcast of the iHeart Living Room Concert hosted by Elton John raised almost $600,000 from viewers nationwide for Bell Let's Talk partner Canadian Red Cross and its COVID-19 response.
For more information about how Bell is keeping Canada connected during these unprecedented times, please visit Bell.ca/COVID-19-Update.
Canada's largest communications company with more than 22 million consumer and business connections, Bell provides advanced broadband wireless, TV, Internet and business communication services throughout the country. Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio, out of home and digital media. Founded in Montréal in 1880, Bell is wholly owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE). To learn more, please visit Bell.ca or BCE.ca.
The Bell Let's Talk initiative promotes Canadian mental health with national awareness and anti-stigma campaigns like Bell Let's Talk Day and significant Bell funding of community care and access, research and workplace leadership initiatives throughout the country. To learn more, please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk.
SOURCE Bell Canada