Printing Industry implores Governor Walz to reverse non-essential status and keep the doors open for this vital communications sector
[March 25, 2020, Minneapolis, Minnesota] - Minnesota is recognized nationally as an epicenter of printing in the United States, third to only New York and California – two states reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic. Printing Industry Midwest (PIM), the not-for-profit trade organization representing the Midwest’s print service providers, implores Governor Walz to reverse the categorization of print and paper related industries as Non-Essential Businesses. The more than 30,000 employees of Minnesota print service providers play a vital role in the supply chain working to suppress the effects of COVID-19 and save lives.
Print service providers today serve all CISA essential business sectors as communication lifelines, from the public health care system, to banking, finance and insurance, and virtually everything in between. An initial Shelter-in-Place mandate in Pennsylvania listed Print & Printing Related Services as ‘Non-Essential,’ but after careful review found Print to have a vital role in combatting COVID-19 – and overturned the ruling.
Here are just a few of the real-world examples from printers serving an essential infrastructure:
- Printing pharmaceutical packaging, scripts, prescription pads
- Printing “Instructions for use" manuals for healthcare professionals and consumers
- Printing face masks, disinfectant wipes, and medical device guidelines
- Printing posters, billboards, and other means of communicating essential information
- Printing Federal and state compliance regulations
- Printing of food packaging cartons, labels, and tags
- Printing of health and safety information for a variety of state agencies
- Printing for banking, insurance, and financial institutions
- Printing for elections and civic undertakings
- Printing hospital signage and alerts
- Printing pertaining to farms and agriculture
- Printing of mailings to Medicare recipients
- Printing of material for government printing offices
- Printing of credentials for health care professionals
The United States Postal System issued the following statement supporting the essential role printers play in the postal eco-system; “The functioning of the postal system depends critically on the mailing and printing industry. Members of the mailing and printing industry work with the public and private sector to create, print, and enter essential mail into the postal system. The industry also serves a vital role in ensuring that packages are able to be efficiently shipped from sender to recipient.”
Print Service Providers are eager to play their part in securing the safety of our communities. Categorizing Printing & Related Industries as non-essential will cripple a variety of life sustaining and life-saving industries by eliminating overnight their sources of communication, packaging, and support materials, when timely information is the literal lifeblood in a time of crisis. We implore the Governor to honor the critical role print service providers play in connecting our community to the information and resources they need to stay safe, productive, and healthy.