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Joint Association Statement on New DHS Textile Trade Enforcement

By Press Club


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The following statement is on behalf of the American Apparel & Footwear Association, the National Retail Federation, the Retail Industry Leaders Association, and the United States Fashion Industry Association in response to today’s announcement by the Department of Homeland Security regarding new enforcement actions to crack down on allegations of illicit textile trade.

“We appreciate the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)’s announcement today outlining enhanced enforcement activities to prevent illicit trade in textiles. Our members support 55 million (more than one in four) American jobs and invest considerable time and resources in their customs compliance programs. Many of our members are Tier 3 participants in Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT). They are trusted traders and meet the high standards required to receive that designation by U.S. Customs and Border Protection and DHS. Our members are on the front lines for ensuring that they have safe and secure supply chains.

“While DHS launches this enforcement plan, we urge it to partner with our associations and our associations’ members. A successful enforcement plan must include input from all stakeholders, clear communication with the trade, and coordinated activities with importers, especially if DHS finds illicit activity happening in the supply chain. The results of any illicit activities must be shared so that our members and other importers can act quickly to address the issue. As our members look to diversify their supply chains, especially back to the Western Hemisphere, we must make sure efforts are included to incentivize and not deter new investments.

“We look forward to working with DHS and the key agencies to ensure these enhanced enforcement activities are successful in stopping illicit shipments while facilitating compliant trade.”

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