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Indigenous-owned company supplies 250,000 masks to oil industry amid COVID-19 – Edmonton Journal

Sep 15, 2020

Major players in Alberta’s oil and gas industry looking to prevent the spread of COVID-19 have tasked a First Nation-owned company with supplying hundreds of thousands of masks.

Goodfish Lake Business Corporation, run by Whitefish Lake First Nation, has been producingwork coveralls and offering dry-cleaning services in Alberta for more than 40 years. Making masks in a pandemic wasn’t part of the plan.

The efficacy of masks was still being debated in Canada when CEO Tom Jackson decided they should make a few for employees, just to be sure they were keeping ahead of industry safety standards. They also made three masks for each of the Indigenous nation’s elders and one for every other member of the community.

“We decided masks could come to Canada as a recommendation at some point, but whether they do or not, what we’re going to do is we’re going to make them for our employees … while we were at it, we thought, let’s learn so if other people start calling we know how much labour we have to do, that type of thing,” he said.

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