COVID-19: Archives

May 4, 2020

Hello everyone,

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been inspired by the many different ways Canadians are taking care of each other during this extraordinary time. The outpouring of support for frontline workers, the elderly, our neighbours and communities is unlike anything I’ve ever seen. It’s these positive and uplifting stories that give me confidence that our future is secure as we work together to overcome this crisis.

At McDonald’s, we’ve always been proud to make meaningful contributions to the communities we serve. Whether it’s through our support of Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC), the local efforts of our Franchisees, or our partnerships with industry associations, it’s important to us that we have a positive impact across Canada.

Bolstering communities and the beef industry

This crisis is affecting everyone differently. The demand on our local food banks is unprecedented and the effect on the Canadian supply chain is making donations critical to their continued operation. Using our size and the partnership of our suppliers, we’re proud to have donated over 250,000 pounds of food to food banks and communities where they need it most.

Our partners in the beef industry are also feeling the heavy impact on the supply chain. We announced last week that we are temporarily sourcing beef from outside of Canada. This is not a decision we wanted to make as we are dedicated to sourcing 100% Canadian beef and have been for decades.  To demonstrate our steadfast commitment to the ranchers and farmers who work to feed Canadians, we have pledged a donation to the Canadian Cattlemen’s Foundation to help support the industry through this crisis. We are looking forward to getting back to 100% Canadian sourcing as soon as possible.

One million cups and counting

Healthcare and emergency workers continue to work tirelessly to help the most vulnerable every day. Since we began offering them a coffee or tea on us, we’ve served over one million cups of coffee -- and counting. We’ve also delivered thousands of meals to hospitals, long-term care homes, and other health and emergency services to refuel care providers during their long days and we will continue to help throughout this crisis.

Feeding families at Ronald McDonald Houses

1 in 4 Canadians have either stayed at a Ronald McDonald House or know someone who has. As RMHC continues to serve families throughout the pandemic, they need support now more than ever and are relying heavily on donations.

In partnership with our Franchisees and supplier partners, we’ve set up initiatives to help sustain their meal programs and deliver weekly meals. Our Franchisees are providing further support to their local RMHC chapters through grocery gift card donations, cash donations, and weekly breakfast and meal deliveries.

We realize this is a difficult time for everyone and as I said, it’s impacting us in many different ways. In the spirit of Giving Tuesday tomorrow, and if it’s within your reach, please consider donating to RMHC to help Canadian families cope during this difficult time.

Some things remain the same 

I want to thank our Franchisees and restaurant teams across the country for continuing to serve Canadians and supporting their communities in amazing ways, like Jason in Windsor, ON who does coffee and pastry drop-offs for his local hospital, Pierre in Rivière-du-Loup, QC whose teams deliver lunches to nurses at Grand Portage Regional Hospital, or Jason in Prince Rupert, BC who drops off meals and coffee for his local RCMP, fire department and seniors’ homes.

While so much has changed in the last few weeks, it’s reassuring to know that some things are still the same. Our commitment to the communities we serve is unwavering – we’re proud to continue serving Canadians our classic products at a time when affordability and convenience matter most. This video really sums it up. 

Still the same
It’s good to know some things haven’t changed.

Thank you for making us part of your day, and we look forward to serving you soon.

John Betts signature

John Betts,
President and CEO
McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada

Still the same

It’s good to know some things haven’t changed.

April 7, 2020

Hello everyone, 

Over the past few weeks Canadians have embraced change like never before, as we have all adapted in the face of this extraordinary health crisis. At McDonald’s, that’s meant closing our dining rooms and stopping takeout service to protect the safety of our guests and employees.  Now we’re adapting to be the best Drive-thru and Delivery restaurant we can possibly be – to provide Canadians with a trusted source of quick and affordable meals at a time when so many other options are unavailable.

Evolving how we operate

We are following the advice of health authorities closely and continue to adapt our procedures to provide the safest environment possible for all the employees working so hard to serve you in the restaurants. As the situation has evolved, we have further emphasized our strict hand-washing and cleaning procedures and provided additional guidelines for health and wellness screening for employees. We have implemented new contact-free service procedures and are quickly installing new plexiglass screens at our Drive-thru windows so that employees and guests can both feel more secure. We’ve also developed new guidelines, so employees can respect social distancing while they work. 

I want to take this moment to express my heartfelt thanks to our franchisees and their employees across the country who are working so hard to continue serving Canadians at this time.

Supporting families and Ronald McDonald House Charities

Along with many Canadians, I always look forward to McHappy Day, our annual celebration and fundraiser in support of Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) and other children’s charities across the country. It’s a wonderful moment when we get together with everyone in our communities to support families in very challenging circumstances. That’s not possible right now, so we will be postponing McHappy Day from May 6th until we find the right time to come together. 

This isn’t a decision we’ve made lightly. Funds from McHappy Day contribute to Ronald McDonald Houses providing a home away from home for families with sick children being treated at a nearby hospital. And as you can imagine, these houses are also working hard to navigate this crisis. They have new health and safety protocols in place to continue supporting the families who are staying with them, but unfortunately, they’re not able to accept new families at this time. Still they are continuing to find new ways to support their hospital partners and communities. In fact, some Ronald McDonald Family Rooms inside hospitals have been repurposed to serve frontline healthcare workers, and in Calgary, the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile is now a mobile maternity clinic to serve the community.

Our franchisees continue to support the Ronald McDonald Houses in their communities wherever they can, like dropping off hot meals for the families. And as a company, we will continue doing everything we can to support RMHC. Food Donations are just one source of that ongoing support. As we’ve reduced our services and closed restaurants, we've worked with our distribution centres and suppliers to donate any excess food in our supply chain. We don’t want anything to go to waste, and I’m pleased to report that so far we’ve donated over 155,000 pounds of food to local food banks and other charities – and are extending that support to RMHC as well.

If anyone has the means to help at this difficult time, please consider donating to this important cause by visiting

We are in this together

We are working together with partners in communities from coast to coast to meet urgent needs as they arise.

That’s why we worked quickly to offer Curbside Pick-Up through the McDonald's app to all the tireless truck-drivers, paramedics and other essential workers whose vehicles don’t fit through our Drive-thrus. We’ve also been offering a free coffee or tea for healthcare and emergency workers, so they can refuel on their way to work – on us. In partnership with our franchisees, it’s a small way for us to say thank you to these essential workers providing vital support for all of us.

Our franchisees and their employees are doing amazing things large and small on a daily basis and I salute them for their leadership and compassion. I’ve said it before and will say it here again: We are in this together. That is our commitment to you from McDonald’s Canada as we work through this with our franchisees, employees and guests. 

Stay safe everyone. Thank you for making us part of your day, and we look forward to serving you soon.

John Betts signature

John Betts,
President and CEO
McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada

March 21, 2020

Hello everyone,

It was just a week ago that I sent my last message, and since then it certainly feels like the world has changed once again. These are uncertain times, but I’m encouraged to see everyone coming together to follow the measures put in place by our respective governments and public health authorities. Truly, the only way through this situation is to work together as one.

At McDonald’s Canada, protecting the health and well-being of our people and our guests has been our number one priority throughout this crisis. It has guided every decision we’ve made as the situation evolved. It is with this in mind that I want to let all our valued guests know of an important announcement.

Closure of Take-Out Service

As of March 22nd, we will no longer be offering take-out service in our restaurants. This means our dining rooms will now be completely closed. In addition, we will also stop offering curbside pickup. However, Drive‑thru and McDelivery service will still be available for those seeking convenient and affordable food options while they practice social distancing.

Select restaurants may continue to offer take-out service in communities where there are specific needs, including locations near hospitals and healthcare facilities.  We are working closely with our franchisees to identify these locations.

This was by no means an easy decision. As we assessed guidance from governments and health authorities and listened to the concerns of our franchisees and restaurant crew, we felt it was important to take action.

We know there are people in our communities without a car to access Drive-thru, and not everyone can access McDelivery, which is why we provided take-out service for as long as we could. Please understand that this change was made for the continued safety of our employees and guests across the country.

Ongoing efforts for our Crew and our communities

You should also know that we have additional measures in place to protect our employees working to fulfil Drive-thru and McDelivery orders. McDonald’s has always maintained the highest standards of hygiene and cleanliness in our restaurants. In the past two weeks we have introduced enhanced procedures that take those standards even further. In addition, we have also introduced social distancing guidelines for our employees to put in place while they work.

We have worked closely with our delivery partners, Uber Eats and SkipTheDishes®, to take precautionary measures for the safe delivery of your food. McDelivery bags are securely sealed and drivers are trained on best practices to get your food to you quickly and safely.

As we reduce service in our restaurants, we also want to make sure that no food goes to waste. With this in mind, we are working with our Distribution Centres and suppliers to make food donations to local organizations, ensuring we continue to support communities across Canada.

We are in this together

In closing, let me say again: we are in this together. I know that you will all understand and appreciate the measures we are taking to protect our employees, and all of you, as we navigate this situation.  

Please keep yourselves and your families safe. Thank you for making us part of your every day, and we look forward to serving you soon.

John Betts signature

John Betts,
President and CEO
McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada

March 13, 2020

To our guests,

At McDonald’s, we live and work in communities across Canada. We feel a deep-rooted responsibility for the health and safety of our people, their families and the communities we serve. In response to COVID-19 we are actively working to ensure the health and safety of everyone in our restaurants. Here’s what we’re doing:

Supporting our employees is our priority

We are recommending employees to stay home from work if they experience any symptoms or have recently travelled abroad to impacted areas. McDonald’s corporate-owned restaurants in Canada and many of our franchisees have existing policies in place to offer paid time off.

Focus on cleanliness in our restaurants

In our restaurants, we remain focused on cleanliness. In addition to our industry-leading hygiene standards, we have increased the frequency of many cleaning tasks with a focus on high-touch surfaces, including; door handles, kiosks, pin pads, counters, tables and, washrooms.

We have also made the decision to temporarily close our PlayPlaces at restaurants across Canada and postpone our Wednesday Family Night activities. These changes will allow our Restaurant Teams to focus on the enhanced cleaning and sanitation of our restaurants.

Changes to our coffee refill and reusable mug procedures

We’ve changed some of our procedures— a simple change like how we refill your coffee in-restaurant and, we have temporarily stopped accepting travel mugs.

Serving you

We will continue to serve you in many ways; in our restaurants, at the drive-thru, with the McDonald’s app, and McDelivery® through our partnerships with Uber Eats and Skip The Dishes.

For more than 50 years, McDonald’s commitment to the communities we operate and live in has endured. Today, that same commitment continues to guide all our actions.

We’re continuing to monitor developments closely and are following the guidance of public health authorities. As the situation changes, we’ll change with them and keep you informed.

Thank you for making us part of your day and we look forward to serving you soon.

John Betts signature


John Betts,
President and CEO
McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada

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