Blog Posts By:

Nathan Proctor,
Director, Campaign for the Right to Repair

Right to Repair advocates continue to support hospitals’ ability to fix their equipment, and other campaign updates.

Electronics recycler Eric Lungren is donating light towers to help hospitals treat patients in emergency triage facilities. 

As manufacturers block access to manuals and other fix-it information, biomedical repair technicians press for reform.

The federal government must show leadership, and coordinate hospital supplies such as masks and ventilators.

It’s common-sense: If something you own breaks, you should be able to fix it. But manufacturers don’t see it that way. Instead, they use a set of tactics to block independent repair because they want consumers to have to come to them to do repairs. Right to Repair made considerable progress in 2019, and just a little over a month into 2020, we’re seeing continued momentum. 

As we reflect back on 2019, and get ready for what should be a frenetic 2020 for the Right to Repair, we wanted to share some of our highlights and milestones. 

Delegates of the Nebraska Farm Bureau, which represents 58,000 member families, voted nearly-unanimously on a voice vote to formally endorse the right of its constituents to repair the products they own, and set strong standards for any legislation or agreement with equipment manufacturers. 

Apple responsed to a Congressional inquiry which asked tough question about repair. Their answers underscore why we need the force of Right to Repair reforms in law. 

Yesterday, I delivered 7,900 petition signatures to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in support of action to address how manufacturers block repair. I was also featured on a panel at the FTC’s “Nixing the Fix” workshop, which explored restrictions on repair, how consumers experience those barriers, and how manufacturers argue against repair. 

In March, the FTC announced a new workshop called “Nixing the Fix,” which will investigate how companies “limit repairs by consumers and repair shops and whether those limitations affect consumer protection, including consumers’ rights.” Last week, the FTC posted submitted comments for it's Nixing the Fix workshop, and by reviewing those comments, it's clear that manufacturers and their lobbying associations are doubling down on their arguments.