Update #1 from Bruce McDonald

To the Black & McDonald community,

The COVID-19 pandemic is a complex, extraordinary and dangerous crisis that is changing rapidly hour by hour. 

While much remains unknown about the virus and uncertain about the outbreak, I am convinced that the spread of the virus will not be slowed in North America without an aggressive, proactive response and an unprecedented unity of purpose and collaboration from government, institutions, corporations and individual citizens.

Accordingly, I believe we bear a unique and urgent social responsibility and moral obligation as human beings and as a company to serve the best interests of our society as actively, intelligently and unselfishly as we possibly can to stop the spread of the virus.

On behalf of my brothers and the McDonald family, I assure you that we are fully committed to doing everything within our control as individuals and within our authority as owners and leaders of Black & McDonald to fulfill this duty in all the communities where we live and work. 

As individuals, each of us has a basic human obligation to do what is right for the safety of others in our community – our loved ones, our families, our friends, our colleagues, and complete strangers – by diligently understanding and carefully following the new pandemic protocols, such as rigorous personal hygiene, active self-monitoring for signs of illness, limiting gatherings of any kind, and literally staying apart from others,  in our daily lives to limit potential exposure and transmission of the virus.  

As a company, we are currently proceeding with a calm, organized approach to preparedness, risk assessment, and crisis response management that is governed by common sense, our passionate commitment to the values of our founder WJ McDonald, and our unwavering trust in our people.

As B&M leaders, Ian, Ross and I remain committed to:

  • Regularly compiling and communicating the most up-to-date information about the pandemic including the characteristics of the COVID-19 from the most trusted sources like PHAC, CDC, WHO and local government health authorities.
  • Updating our B&M community with best practices for personal hygiene and social distancing based on the latest consensus of our trusted sources.
  • Actively monitoring and assessing COVID-19 risk in every B&M location so we are making the best possible decisions for our people, business, customers, and communities.
  • Collaborating with all Regions on the creation and deployment of pandemic response plans that best suit the local needs and on the effective management of incidents as they occur.

For your information, I have attached our latest update on individual pandemic protocols, company guidelines, status and activities, and a new version of COVID-19 FAQ.    

I believe that we need to maintain a sensible, informed perspective regarding COVID-19.  While the pandemic is a very grave societal and economic threat, the current experience tells us that the vast majority of those becoming infected by the virus recover without ever becoming seriously ill. 

Nonetheless, any one of us could be a conduit for transmitting the virus to a loved one, colleague, customer or stranger who is more vulnerable due to age, fragility of health, or simply bad luck.  Herein lies the essence of our duty to others and the necessity for personal adoption of extreme social measures at work, in public and at home.  

I am very concerned about the pandemic and its impact on my B&M family.  But I have the utmost confidence in our ability to individually and collectively rise to the challenge, to do our very best, to act with the utmost concern for others, and, in doing so, to distinguish ourselves as good people and a good company.

The opportunity to act in a better way is one that is continuously afforded to us.  I implore you to seize it.

There has simply never been a more important time to do it right.

Bruce