Burton to donate half a million KN95 face masks as part of Covid-19 relief efforts
Snowboarding and outdoor brand Burton has announced it plans to donate half a million KN95 masks to healthcare workers around the country working to fight Covid-19, and has began using its facilities to produce protective face shields.
On April 8, Burton announced that it delivered its first shipment of 200,000 KN95 masks this week to hospitals across the brand's home state of Vermont, and to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire, where Burton founder Jake Burton Carpenter was treated for Miller-Fisher Syndrome in 2015.
The next shipment of masks is set to go to New York City, where Covid-19-related deaths have reached grim heights. To date, New York City has seen over 4,700 reported deaths as a result of the outbreak, while the state has reported at least 149,316 total positive cases, making New York the hardest hit state in the US.
In total, Burton said it plans to donate 500,000 masks to healthcare workers around the country.
Donna Carpenter, who has acted at the company's leader and chair of the board since her husband's death in November of 2019, called the current shortage of needed protective gear a "national disgrace" and a "fundamental failure" of federal leadership.
“My family cherishes the compassionate doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals who saved my husband’s life at Dartmouth-Hitchcock in 2015 and also those who cared for him at the University of Vermont Medical Center where he received cancer treatments and end of life care," she said. "To hear their stories about lack of personal protective equipment is heartbreaking. I wish we could do more, but I’m glad we could make a bit of a difference.”
To provide further support, Burton has stopped manufacturing snowboards at its Craig’s Prototype Facility in Burlington, Vermont and started making face shields. The brand said that it has a goal of producing 500 a week during the month of April that will be distributed to hospitals and facilities in need. The first shipment of shields is set to go to Boston Children's Hospital.
In addition, the company donated 1,300 Anon Optics goggles to the Goggles for Docs effort, which is collecting and distributing new and used goggles to hospitals, and Burton employees have launched an initiative to make at least 200 homemade face masks.
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