TORONTO – As part of its ongoing COVID-19 recovery plan, the TTC will expand its mask giveaway program with a focus on the bus network next week.
“This expanded campaign will get masks into the hands of customers on the busiest bus routes at the busiest times,” said TTC CEO Rick Leary. “We want our customers to know we will continue to do whatever we can to ensure they are safe and feel comfortable while riding the TTC.
On Oct. 15, the TTC announced it would be recalling the remaining 179 laid-off employees, partly as a result of ridership on the bus network being at approximately 50 percent of pre-pandemic levels.
Of the returning employees, 110 are bus operators who will return to their duties while another group of operators will be re-trained to drive buses. Some of the returning employees will be deployed to subway stations to give masks away and 26 individuals will be assigned to work as roaming ambassadors.
Roaming ambassadors will be assigned to rotate through the 25 busiest spots on the bus network in shifts on weekdays when ridership is highest. They will receive training and be equipped with PPE to ensure safe distribution.
This campaign is designed to be flexible enough to respond to changing travel patterns in real-time and will be in place at least through December.
The latest TTC audit shows mask adoption at 98 percent across the system with 91 percent of customers wearing them properly.