Customers at King County locations of Safeway will be able to take home free face masks with their groceries starting today with a new partnership between King County, Safeway, and UFCW Local 21.
King County purchased more than 25 million face masks for county residents, and to date has distributed more than 14 million reusable and disposable masks through direct distribution and partnerships with local chambers of commerce and other community organizations.
“As we all learn to wear masks when we’re heading into a public setting, we’re starting to see progress in defeating the spread of COVID-19, and this partnership between Safeway and UFCW 21 will help get more masks into the hands of people throughout King County,” said Executive Constantine.
Starting today, customers at any of the 59 Safeway locations in King County can obtain two free reusable masks per person in their household, for up to 12 masks total, while at the check stand. Disposable masks will also be available for customers who may have forgotten or misplaced their masks at all stores. All told Safeway will help distribute 750,000 face masks provided by King County.
“We appreciate this partnership with King County to make certain that everyone has access to a quality cloth mask, and are especially grateful for the customers who so quickly adapted to wearing a mask during shopping to help protect our associates and others in the store,” said Sara Osborne, director of external affairs for Safeway, Seattle division.
“UFCW 21 applauds Executive Constantine’s leadership in the fight to keep workers and our communities safe, and we appreciate the partnership with both King County and Safeway on this effort,” said Faye Gunther, president of UFCW 21. “Even in a pandemic, most people still end up at the grocery store on a regular basis, which makes it a great place to distribute free protective gear. We know from experience that when people have access to free masks, they’re more likely to use them and less likely to be confrontational with people enforcing health and safety rules. This is an extremely difficult time for most front-line essential workers, who are stepping up to offer vital services to our communities, often for no extra pay or benefits. Anything that supports workplace safety and community safety at the same time like this is a win-win.”
The above is a press release from the office of King County Executive Dow Constantine. The Auburn Examiner has not independently verified its contents and encourages our readers to personally verify any information they find may be overly biased or questionable. The publication of this press release does not indicate an endorsement of its contents.