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Randy Congress Zoom

Trucking workforce lauded in Congressional hearing

June 15, 2020
ATA chairman highlights association’s efforts to procure, distribute PPE during COVID-19 crisis

Randy Guillot, chairman of the American Trucking Associations and president of Triple G Express and Southeastern Motor Freight, recently appeared remotely before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee to testify about the trucking industry’s essential role serving on the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis.

Due to the US Houses social-distancing protocols, Guillot spoke via video conference from his home state of Louisiana.

“The COVID-19 pandemic thrust America’s trucking industry to the forefront of our national consciousness,” Guillot said in his opening remarks. “As most activity across the country ground to a halt, America’s 3.5 million professional truck drivers kept moving. These heroes continue serving on the frontlines to ensure everyone has the goods they need to get through these challenging times.

“Truckers are the difference between a fully stocked grocery store and one lined with empty shelves. They’re why doctors and nurses have PPE to protect themselves. They’re how test kits get to hot spots for local officials to use to fight the virus’ spread.”

In his testimony, Guillot emphasized why protecting the industry’s workforce has been critical to mitigating the crisis, and detailed how ATA and partners have taken proactive measures to provide safeguards for frontline workers. ATA spearheaded a nationwide effort to distribute 1,100 gallons of hand sanitizer along major freight corridors where truck drivers can replenish their personal supplies at no cost. ATA also procured more than 150,000 face coverings at cost for member fleets and worked with the US Department of Transportation in distributing an additional 1.5 million protective masks to frontline truckers across the country.

Guillot also pressed the committee to pass a bipartisan infrastructure bill this year, telling lawmakers that investing in our roads and bridges is paramount to ensuring the safety and well-being of America’s 3.5 million professional truck drivers.

“Finally, I’d be remiss if I did not note Chairman (Peter) DeFazio’s introduction of a comprehensive infrastructure bill,” Guillot said. “Let me be clear: the single most important action this Congress can take right now to support our workforce—and to provide for their safety—is to invest in our infrastructure.

“Roads and bridges are not Democrat or Republican. We all drive on them. For the 7.7 million Americans in trucking doing their jobs day and night, moving our economy, we ask members of this committee to do theirs—and pass a bipartisan infrastructure bill this year that meets the urgent needs of our economy, our industry and the motoring public.”

Guillot’s full written testimony is available here. Visit trucking.org/news-insights/congress-turns-trucking-covid-19-lessons for more information.