U.S. Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Gary Peters (D-MI) introduced a bill designed to promote the production of personal protective equipment (PPE) in the United States.
Specifically, the Make PPE in America Act would require the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) to issue long-term contracts for American-made PPE.
“The American people should not have to rely so heavily on foreign countries for personal protective equipment, and that’s why we must bring PPE production back to our shores,” Portman said. “When I talk to PPE manufacturers about re-shoring this production to America, the number one thing I hear the need for long-term contracts. Multi-year contracts give producers the certainty to know that their investment in the United States will be worth it because the government will be there to buy the PPE they produce. By re-shoring production of PPE, we can continue to support a safe and effective reopening of our schools, workplaces, and the economy, and I urge my colleagues to support this important bipartisan legislation.”
“We want to thank Senators Portman and Peters for introducing the “Make PPE in America Act” to help onshore critical PPE production,” said
The National Council of Textile Organizations supports the bill. NCTO President and CEO Kim Glas said using the purchasing power of the federal government to issue long-term contracts to American companies will help the U.S. become self-sufficient in producing PPE materials.
“Our nation’s dependence on foreign manufacturers for PPE, such as masks, gloves, and respirators, is a serious national security risk,” Peters, ranking member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said. “I raised concerns about this problem in a report last year, and the shortages caused by the Coronavirus pandemic only underscore the need to incentivize American manufacturers to produce these critical supplies in the United States. Workers and companies in Michigan and across the country know how to manufacture great products, and this bipartisan bill will help provide certainty for American companies to create jobs, make PPE, and strengthen our ability to respond to this and future pandemics.”