In response to the urgent needs of medical professionals for protective personal equipment (PPE) to combat COVID-19, ACCO Brands has taken several steps to support the cause. The company is donating raw materials to organizations across the country that are committed to producing face shields, and creating a program to expedite and make safer the lamination process for COVID-19-related documents.
ACCO Brands has shipped products made of clear polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastic, to organizations like Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, as well as mHub and Hero Solutions, two organizations in Chicago, Illinois, which will convert these into 50,000 protective face shields. Further, ACCO Brands plans to extend donations to New Orleans and Los Angeles to contribute to the manufacture of PPE in the areas hit hardest by the pandemic.
“I cannot thank the company enough,” Amy Kuceyeski, Associate Professor of Mathematics and Radiology at Cornell University said. “The volunteer organizations in NYC that we work with are running dangerously low on their stock and these will arrive just in time. Meanwhile, the laminating films that were sent will be put to good use in PAPR hoods at the local hospitals, very soon. This donation will make a huge difference; statistically speaking, it will save lives!”
The shields are used in combination with an N-95 face mask to shelter medical workers from airborne droplets that can carry the coronavirus.
Sizeable product donations are being made, which include clear binding covers, lamination pouches and film, transparency film, pouch laminators, hole punches and staplers.
In addition to ACCO Brands’ product donations to nonprofit organizations manufacturing protective personal equipment (PPE) throughout the United States, GBC® has developed a new program to loan Foton 30 desktop laminators to healthcare institutions, PPE manufacturers and other essential businesses, such as grocery stores and pharmacies.
“Time and sanitization are crucial in healthcare and essential services, now more than ever; a multitude of signs, flyers and handouts are being produced and put up every day,” said GBC Product Marketing Manager Dan Charwath. “The Foton 30 allows for fast and easy lamination to protect signs from wear and tear, as well as allowing for easy sanitization – just spray and wipe down the laminated document, and you’re finished. We hope this program will help those working keep us safe, save time and keep printed applications sanitary.”
The intent of this program is to ensure these critical businesses can laminate any signage, flyers, handouts, etc., to sanitize and preserve the documents, as necessary.
Under the parameters of the program, GBC lends the Foton 30 to an institution for 90 days to use in the production of COVID-19-related materials, so that they may be safely disinfected. Additionally, the team offers a donation of free film with each loaned laminator.
A total of more than 1 million face shields can be manufactured from both ACCO Brands’ product donations and the Foton 30 Loaner Program.
ACCO Brands is continuing to closely monitor areas of need during this time to find new ways to use its resources to keep employees and customers safe, and contribute to the fight against COVID-19.
“ACCO Brands is happy to assist during this difficult time by donating some of our end products to companies that are using them to manufacture protective equipment,” ACCO Brands CEO Boris Elisman said. “We are proud that our items can help protect first responders and essential healthcare workers who are putting their lives at risk.”