WASHINGTON – Thirteen AWFS members and association officers participated in the Second Annual Woodworking Equipment and Wood Processing (WEWP) Public Policy Fly-In to Washington, DC, meeting with congressional representatives from California, Georgia, Ohio, Indiana, Utah, North Carolina and Oregon. Contingents from the WMIA and WMMA also attended. The Senate was voting on the Stimulus Bill at the time, allowing AWFS members to discuss the industry’s needs in a very timely fashion.

The group also learned that the Manufacturing Institute is embarking on a three-part strategy to raise awareness about modern manufacturing, in order to generate more favorable government policies and spurring greater interest in manufacturing careers. The program will include:

•    A communications and advertising awareness campaign utilizing print, radio and television designed to change public attitudes about manufacturing;
•    New research initiatives designed to dispel outmoded notions of manufacturing to educate government on the new, high-tech realities of the industry; and
•    Making manufacturing careers a priority among young Americans by 2010 through a campaign called “Dream It. Do It.”

Any AWFS member can join other manufacturers in Washington, DC, next year.

“We invite all members to become part of our group,” said Angelo Gangone, executive director, AWFS. “The three days will prove quite worthwhile to you and your company and benefit our industry. You don’t have to be on the board or on a committee – you just have to have a desire for your voice to be heard. With a new administration, the time is ripe to put manufacturing concerns in the face of our representatives. We need to let them know how the economy is impacting each of our companies.”

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