The American Apparel & Footwear Association welcomed the U.S. Senate’s confirmation of Kathi Vidal to lead the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
“As the USPTO Director, Kathi Vidal is charged with the protection of American creativity and innovation. A staunch advocate for the importance of safeguarding intellectual property, Director Vidal is a strong addition to the U.S. Department of Commerce,” said Steve Lamar, president, and CEO of the American Apparel & Footwear Association. “AAFA and our members are dedicated to protecting consumers, defending American intellectual property, building American jobs, and safeguarding workers around the globe. We look forward to the continued partnership with USPTO and welcome Kathi Vidal’s confirmation, further enhancing the team at the U.S. Department of Commerce. American ingenuity and creativity are foundational to global business; just like we raise international issues with the U.S. government to hold other countries and markets responsible to eradicate counterfeits – we do the same at home with the respective U.S. government agencies to elevate issues AAFA members are seeing, including bad faith marks approved in the United States.”
AAFA works closely with Congress and U.S. government agencies – including the U.S. Trade Representative, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and more – to sound the alarm and develop effective policies to raise public awareness, improve tools in the fight against illicit and counterfeit goods, and hold e-commerce and social media platforms responsible.
AAFA members go above and beyond to protect the health and safety of our consumers by ensuring their products are safe, while counterfeits put all that at risk, harming consumers, hurting companies, and destroying jobs.
AAFA continues to advocate for the passage of the SHOP SAFE Act and INFORM Consumers Act. The association recently released important findings from a study that tested counterfeit goods – including clothing, footwear, and other accessories – for dangerous and concerning issues. Of the 47 counterfeit products tested, 17 products (or 36.2 percent) failed to comply with U.S. product safety standards. The products that failed contained dangerous levels of arsenic, cadmium, phthalates, lead, and more that have been shown to cause adverse health outcomes.