AEM Steps Up for Manufacturers Amid Virus Crisis


The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) said it recognizes the immense impact that the current COVID-19 pandemic is having on its member companies, employees, suppliers and customers, as well as partner sectors such as agriculture and construction. "Our top priority is focused on ensuring the health and safety of our member companies, their employees, our staff and our partners," the group said in a statement.

AEM is working closely with the U.S. Congress, the White House, U.S. government agencies, and state and local officials to make sure they take immediate steps to contain the spread of COVID-19, support equipment manufacturers and their employees, and ensure the country’s economic resilience. 

"As this rapidly developing crisis unfolds, we will share timely updates on our actions to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our member companies and provide opportunities for equipment manufacturers to share their experiences, provide their perspectives and guide the actions of federal, state, and local elected officials," the association stated.

AEM will send regular updates so that member companies have easy access to the most recent information and are up-to-date on how AEM is leading the efforts on behalf of the industry during the COVID-19 pandemic. Additional information and resources are available at www.aem.org/covid-19-information-and-resources.

The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has issued an initial guidance on “Identification of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers During COVID-19 Response.” At the urging of AEM, the initial guidance ensures that “employees engaged in the manufacture and maintenance of equipment and other infrastructure necessary to agricultural production and distribution” is included in the initial list released on March 19.

However, this initial guidance largely left the decision on which industries and businesses should be deemed essential up to state and local officials. This is why today AEM sent a letter to the President requesting that the federal government designate equipment manufacturers, suppliers and dealers as “essential” and providing state and local jurisdictions with a clear and consistent federal directive moving forward.

AEM has also called on Congress to provide liquidity to equipment manufacturers struggling through the COVID-19 pandemic. In a letter to Congressional leaders, AEM calls for a federal fund of grants and loans to provide much needed liquidity to equipment manufacturers, as well as a voluntary federal program that would provide equipment manufacturers with the flexibility to retain employees at reduced hours.

AEM said it would also continue to work with Congress on a series of additional policy recommendations for how to strengthen the economic recovery in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.