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PHOTOS: MTA Mask Force Hands Out Free Masks to Customers

Updated February 25, 2021 4:19 p.m.
members of the MTA's mask force in brooklyn

View Photos of Today's Volunteers including Elected Officials, MTA IG, and MTA Chief Customer Officer


The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today held its 13th “Mask Force” volunteer day as mask usage throughout the system is at approximately 98%. To date, the MTA has made more than 22 million masks available for distribution to customers and employees. Masks are available through various means including Mask Force, ambassador programs, free availability at stations, free mask dispensers on buses, and PPE vending machines across the MTA network. 

Approximately 145 volunteers, including State Assembly Member Mathylde Frontus, City Council Member Keith Powers, MTA Inspector General Carolyn Pokorny, and MTA Chief Customer Officer Sarah Meyer, are handing out an expected 50,000 to 60,000 masks today at the following locations: 

  • 74 St-Roosevelt Av-Jackson Hts
  • 145 St 
  • 149 St-Grand Concourse
  • Atlantic Av-Barclays Ctr
  • Broadway Junction-ENY
  • Coney Island–Stillwell Av
  • Grand Central–42 St 
  • Jamaica-Sutphin/Archer
  • St. George
  • Times Square-42 St 

More than 875 people have volunteered for the MTA Mask Force since its inception. The volunteers include top MTA officials and other employees, elected officials and their staffs, advocates, community board members, and members of the riding public. The program focuses primarily on almost a dozen subway stations for maximum line coverage and the busiest bus hubs with broad coverage across New York City. Employees and volunteers wear bright yellow t-shirts and vests identifying them as part of the team. The Mask Force has distributed more than 500,000 masks since July 2020. 

Across agencies to date, the MTA has acquired for distribution to customers 7.2 million masks and 750,000 2-oz bottles of hand sanitizer. Additionally, the Authority has distributed to its workforce 15.6 million masks, 17.6 million pairs of gloves, 106,000 gallons of hand sanitizer, 247,000 7-oz and 2-oz bottles of hand sanitizer, 12 million individual sanitizing cleaning wipes, 249,000 gallons of cleaning solution, and 17,000 face shields.  

The MTA first launched its Mask Force in July 2020 in order to supplement its existing distribution of masks in the transit system and acknowledge customers who are already compliant. Wearing a face covering on public transportation in New York was required by law under Executive Order 202.18 issued by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo effective April 17, 2020. A $50 fine was implemented on Sept. 14, 2020 for customers who refuse to wear a mask on public transportation.