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NGA Advocates for Cross-Border Travel of Glass Industry Technicians

July 2020 

The National Glass Association fully understands urgent times require urgent action. NGA members across the glass and glazing supply chain are doing everything they can to safeguard their workforce, customers, and their businesses in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Cross-border travel restrictions instituted due to the pandemic have disrupted essential operations of glass manufacturers and fabricators. The NGA urges governments to continue to recognize the essential nature of glass and glazing, and to also recognize the cross-border travel of glass industry service technicians as essential as well.  

The glass and glazing industry produces and installs building materials essential to human health, safety and security across all building types, including defense and public safety projects serving the U.S. public interest. Fabricated float glass can be used to mitigate spread of infectious diseases in many built environment applications. Since the start of the pandemic, glass has been relied upon to provide protections for frontline workers in healthcare environments, along with the many essential workers and customers in retail, office, government spaces and more.  

The essential nature of glass extends far beyond virus protection. Safety glazing and fire-safety glazing are among many specialty fabricated glass products produced by our industry, as required by our building codes in hospitals, medical centers, K-12 educational buildings, college dormitories and senior citizen residences. 

Glass plants were deemed essential businesses at the start of the pandemic and allowed to continue operations. Despite the recognition of the essential nature of glass production, cross-border travel of glass industry service technicians has been interrupted. As a result, glass plant operations are being interrupted and hindered when machinery and equipment requires service technicians from the countries where the technologies originate.  

The NGA fully supports all government actions in this crisis and all that’s being done to mitigate loss of life and suffering. NGA is working hard to help our members and the industry at large to comply with all CDC and other government mandates to stem the crisis and flatten the curve.  

To ensure glass companies can continue operations and provide glass for safe and healthy spaces, the NGA urges the extension of the essential designation of glass plants to the related travel of industry technicians.  

With great respect, 

Nicole Harris signature

Nicole Harris
President & CEO 
National Glass Association