WASHINGTON — As Congress, President Trump, and other policy makers across the country manage the rapidly changing circumstances surrounding the spread of the Coronavirus, millions of businesses are being forced to close. ACCA asks for help to ensure HVACR contractors are treated as essential service providers during this national emergency.
ACCA is demanding that HVACR contractors be exempt from any mandates that require businesses to temporarily close or individuals to self-isolate. HVACR contractors should be considered emergency service providers because they perform necessary, life-saving services on several components of our nation’s most critical infrastructure. This includes, but is not limited to, the healthcare industry, the agri-food supply chain, cooling for data and information technology centers, and essential heating, cooling, and refrigeration needs for vulnerable populations.
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If contractors do not have the necessary labor to service the HVACR systems at vital sites like hospitals, labs, pharmacies, grocery stores, and food warehouses, among other places where lives, safety, and economic well-being are all at stake, the consequences could be catastrophic. Imagine a hospital, overwhelmed with patients suffering from the Coronavirus, and the mechanical systems breakdown. Failure to provide ventilation needs and maintain indoor air quality would mean certain death for many.
ACCA is also fighting for business friendly provisions in stimulus packages that will protect businesses and workers. ACCA is fighting for expanded access to unemployment insurance rather than mandates to provide paid leave. Unlike mandated paid leave, which contractors have not budgeted for, HVACR contractors have budgeted for unemployment insurance and have already paid into those accounts. Considering that unemployment has been at a historic low, those accounts should be well funded, and ACCA believes that would enable HVACR contractors to survive some very challenging times.
ACCA has prepared a letter that will be sent to contractor's state and federal officials, seen here.
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