As COVID-19 forces the closure of more and more businesses, construction should be named an essential service, according to the Associated Equipment Distributors (AED).
On March 20, AED’s President and CEO Brian P. McGuire urged Canada’s 10 premiers to designate the construction industry, including companies that sell, rent and service construction equipment and related supplies, as an essential service, which would continue to ensure important infrastructure assets can be built and maintained while fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.
“As your government continues the tireless work to limit the spread of COVID-19 through urging Canadians to work from home and self-isolation measures, it is important that the construction industry and those that support it are able to perform the work necessary to build and maintain our critical infrastructure,” McGuire wrote in his letter to Ontario Premier Doug Ford.
“Equipment distribution and maintenance is vital to Canada’s ability to continue developing and improving public works projects that are essential for delivering needed medical supplies, food and goods, clean water and energy to households during this pandemic.”
McGuire also explained the Canadian equipment distribution industry, which is dominated by small-medium-sized, family owned businesses, has more than 420 locations across the country and employs more than 27,000 workers and account for at least $8 billion in annual economic activity.
“It’s equally important that the companies that supply and maintain the equipment and related supplies are allowed to remain open to serve customers and ensure Canada’s crucial infrastructure is built and maintained,” McGuire said.
“AED members are already going to great lengths and following the recommended public health guidance to ensure the infrastructure needs of our country continue to be met. Shutting down their ability to do so will not only impact the economic viability of our member companies, but also the entire country.”
AED is the international trade association companies that sell, rent, service and manufacture construction, mining, farm, energy, forestry and industrial equipment and related supplies.