The Cleaning Industry Heads To Capitol Hill To Meet With Congressional Offices

ISSA has announced that as part of National Cleaning Week, March 26-April 1, more than 75 cleaning industry leaders are in Washington, D.C. participating in the 2023 ISSA Clean Advocacy Summit, a Capitol Hill fly-in event for the cleaning industry. On March 29, these advocates will meet with more than 80 congressional offices in support of tariff relief, ending period poverty, and an expansion of the workforce by calling for the creation of a new temporary visa program.

Attendees include manufacturers and distributors of cleaning products, equipment and supplies, as well as service providers and staff responsible for ensuring clean and healthy schools, homes, hospitals, hotels, workplaces, and other spaces.

With a new Congress and many new faces, it is more important than ever for ISSA and the cleaning industry to be at the table,” ISSA Executive Director John Barrett said. “Our industry proved essential during the pandemic, and the industry’s leaders want to reinforce that healthy and safe workplaces and spaces are an important contributor to the economy and public health.”

These leaders will ask Congress to create a new temporary worker program for essential workers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “About 335,500 openings for janitors and building cleaners are projected each year, on average, over the decade,” which includes a 4% annual projected growth. Summit attendees will advocate that the cleaning industry needs a predictable, reliable, and legal source of supplemental labor to continue to provide healthy workplaces, schools, hospitals, homes, hotels, and other spaces.

People can help the industry reinforce the message to support a temporary worker program by taking a moment to email or tweet their federal elected officials to request their support. Use the pre-populated temporary worker program form here.

Additionally, industry representatives will ask for the removal of the China Section 301 tariffs on important raw materials, intermediate inputs, and other cleaning and hygiene-related products and equipment. At a minimum, advocates will request the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) to implement a fair, transparent, and robust exclusion process.

People can reinforce the message to support tariff relief for essential products by taking a moment to email or tweet their federal elected officials to request their support. Use the pre-populated tariff relief form here.

Participants will also ask Congress to support federal and state efforts to address the issue of period poverty. The association has been working with governments, schools, and other facilities to encourage them to ensure menstrual care products are available for free in bathrooms.

More than a dozen states have already passed laws requiring schools, colleges, or prisons to provide these products free of charge in bathrooms just as they already do with paper towels, toilet paper, and hand soap. ISSA is also encouraging support of Congresswoman Grace Meng’s (D-NY) Menstrual Equity for All Act once it is reintroduced.

People can reinforce the message to support federal and state efforts to address the issue of period poverty by taking a moment to email or tweet their federal elected official to request their support. Use the pre-populated period poverty form here.

Attendees will hear from Senator John Boozman (R-AR) and Reps. Grace Meng (D-NY), and Carol Miller (R-WV). Additionally, the group has meetings scheduled with Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS), Rep. Lloyd Smucker (R-PA), Rep. Marc Molinaro (R-NY), Rep. Sharice Davids (D-KS), Rep. Bryan Steil (R-WI), and Rep. Jake Ellzey (R-TX).

With the split control of Congress by razor-thin margins and ever-increasing economic uncertainty, the cleaning industry has an important story to tell about how it is contributing to the economy and protecting public health,” ISSA Director of Government Affairs John Nothdurft said.

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