RideKC is handing out free masks to public transportation riders on Tuesday, June 30.

An order by Mayor Quinton Lucas went into effect Monday, June 29 that all employees or visitors to any place of public accommodation must wear a face covering in an area or while performing an activity which will involve close contact or proximity to coworkers or the public where six feet of separation is not feasible.

This means riders and operators of the RideKC buses and KC Streetcar are required to wear face coverings.

“Safety is our top priority,” said Robbie Makinen, KCATA CEO. “This public health crisis requires flexibility on the part of our riders and our operators. It is a small step to take to ensure the health of everyone.”

RideKC received the reusable cotton masks from the Federal Transit Administration for distribution to riders. 

Research has shown that wearing a cloth mask or other face covering helps prevent the spread of COVID-19, especially when social distancing may be difficult,” a press release from KCATA said. “These masks can help keep area residents and employees healthy.”

RideKC staff will be at the following locations on Tuesday distributing masks: Boardwalk Transit Center 6 to 8:30 a.m. Grand at 12th from 9 to 11 a.m.; 31st & Prospect from 9 to 11 a.m., 10th & Main 9 to 10:30 a.m.; and 47th & State Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas from 9 to 11 a.m.

“Since the beginning of this COVID crisis, KCATA has implemented several creative strategies to keep bus riders, streetcar riders, and operators safe, while never interrupting service for those who need it most,” Lucas said. “By providing masks to all riders, KCATA once again has demonstrated its commitment to keeping all who utilize public transit safe. I appreciate their partnership as we work to keep our community healthy.”

Kansas Governor Laura Kelly issued a similar statewide order that went into effect on Friday.

More details of the order that was announced on June 26 are available at KCMO.org.