Glas testimony: Time is ‘ripe’ for revival of U.S. PPE manufacturing
Posted May 19, 2021
WASHINGTON, D.C. – National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) President and CEO Kim Glas testified today on “COVID-19 Part II: Evaluating the Medical Supply Chain and Pandemic Response Gaps, before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
In written testimony submitted to the committee, Glas provided an overview of the U.S. market prior to the pandemic and the root causes of America’s dependence on offshore sources for medical PPE (Personal Protective Equipment); the heroic response of the U.S. textile industry; the federal government’s response to the crisis; and a series of policy recommendations to incentivize the establishment of a permanent domestic PPE supply chain.
“The time is ripe for a revival of American PPE textile manufacturing. It has already begun, but we are at a pivotal point,” Glas said. “Without the necessary policy response and support, our recent progress will be undone just as quickly, and China’s stranglehold over global medical textile supply will be locked in for the foreseeable future with no reason to invest here. However, with the right policy framework, the domestic PPE supply chains built overnight can endure and grow, creating a level of self-sufficiency domestically that we have learned the hard way is essential to our national health and economic security.”
Glas detailed key policy recommendations designed to establish a permanent domestic PPE supply chain, including:
Create strong domestic procurement rules for federal PPE purchases and other essential products – substantially similar to the Berry Amendment and the Kissell Amendment, which require 100% U.S. content from fiber production forward;
Implement forward-looking policies to shore up the Strategic National Stockpile and issue long-term contracts to incentivize investment in the domestic PPE manufacturing base;
Create federal incentives for private sector hospitals and large provider networks to purchase domestically produced PPE; and
Continue to deploy the Defense Production Act to shore up the textile industrial base from raw materials to end products for all essential products.
View the full written testimony by Glas here.