Date: June 16, 2011
To: American Made Alliance members and friends
Re: Your help is needed!
We work so hard to encourage consumers to buy American, and many are doing their part. Many more are thwarted in their efforts when they arrive in the stores, because too many imported products are improperly or deceptively labeled.
Together, we can combat the fraudulent and confusing labeling that threatens Made in America products in the marketplace. Our combined voices can make a difference.
Please take a moment today to send a letter to your Senator or Representative. It’s so easy to do online: Both the Senate and Congress have online contact forms!
Ask your elected officials to urge the U.S. Treasury Department to increase enforcement of the existing indelible labeling law.
The law states that imported products must be “conspicuously and indelibly marked” so that consumers can see the country of origin. Far too many products come in with paper labels that are easily covered or removed, and that prevents the consumer from learning if a product is American made or imported!
Keeping it simple for you:
Here’s a draft letter that you may copy. Just paste the text into the electronic contact form provided by your elected official (see below), or paste the text onto your letterhead/stationery if you prefer to use snail mail.
Dear _____(insert name here)______: I am writing to you about an issue important to me, to the industry I work in, and to American jobs and manufacturing. As consumers increase their support of American Made products, their search is often thwarted by fraud and deception. While the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 CFR Part 134) states that every imported item must be conspicuously and indelibly marked in English to indicate to the ‘‘ultimate purchaser’’ its country of origin, this has not become an accepted practice. The common use of removable “Made in Country” paper stickers has led to an underground practice, by many manufacturers, importers, distributors, and retailers, of removing or obscuring the paper stickers to confuse or deceive consumers. A U.S. Treasury Department directive to eliminate the use of paper stickers as a method of country of origin marking, and committed enforcement of true permanent and indelible marking, are the first steps in stopping this problem. Spot enforcement is the next step. Items found to be not permanently and indelibly marked can be detained, and the importer can be fined a 10 percent marking duty. I work in a business sector comprised of artisan studios, start-up manufacturers and Main Street retailers specializing in the sale of authentic American-made goods, with an estimated economic impact of $14 billion. We could double that impact if we could reduce or prevent the fraudulent representation of imports as Made in America products. It requires only a directive from the Treasury Department to repair this injustice to those of us who wish to compete in a fair marketplace of authentic American made products. I join with the American Made Alliance in urging you to call for increased Customs enforcement of indelible labeling. For more information about the indelible marking issue, visit http://www.AmericanMadeAlliance.org.
Click here to send it to your Senator.
Click here to send it to your Congressperson.