Labatt donates 223,000 cans of water to Toronto
Labatt Breweries of Canada is again mobilizing its breweries to produce and deliver six truck loads with 223,000 cans of drinking water to support COVID-19 relief efforts in Toronto.
“I want to thank Labatt Breweries of Canada for their commitment to donate the 223,000 cans of drinking water to help our most vulnerable citizens who are impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in unique ways,” said Mayor John Tory. “The support of private partners like Labatt have helped our City in our non-stop efforts to respond to this emergency – to protect the health of residents and save lives. While our own Toronto tap water continues to be safe and reliable, we know that these challenging times call for extraordinary measures and we are grateful to our corporate partners who are helping us deliver.”
The 223,000 cans of drinking water will be distributed equally between the Toronto Drop-In Network and its Streets to Home Program. The need for canned drinking water is a result of reduced opportunities for those who are street involved or experiencing homelessness to access drinking water.
With the majority of daytime drop-in providers having moved to a takeaway meal service model, there is a high demand for single-use, portable drinks. This allows service providers to distribute drinks, along with takeaway meals, while maintaining public health guidelines for appropriate physical distancing. It also helps by eliminating practices that could possibly transmit COVID-19 such as using shared drinking water sources (e.g. water fountains) or shared or uncleaned re-useable bottles.
“This has been an incredibly challenging time for all Canadians. Our 3,500 employees across the country have been doing an exceptional job rising to the occasion so we can give back to our communities,” said Charlie Angelakos, Labatt’s vice president, legal and corporate affairs. “When we heard there was a shortage of drinking water supply at some of the City of Toronto’s critical programs, we mobilized our Disaster Relief Program as quickly as we could.”
Labatt’s Canadian Disaster Relief Program was first established to provide safe drinking water to Canadian communities that have experienced a natural disaster. The company’s hometown brewery in London, Ont. periodically pauses beer production to can drinking water to be ready to help communities in times of disaster.
According to Labatt, the company maintains a constant inventory of fresh and safe canned water exclusively for this purpose. Since its inception, the program has expanded to provide support beyond drinking water, such as donating 100,000 bottles of hand sanitizer, and mobilizes as needs arise during times of disaster or crisis.