We're rallying behind nationwide "Right To Repair" legislation
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has opened up a public comment period for a nationwide Right to Repair law. We have until February 2 to rally support, counter industry opposition and move this forwards.
5 states have now passed repair bills, with 4 of those 5 laws passed in the last year alone. Now, we're looking to use that momentum and pass a law nationwide. Legislation like this would make repairing our devices easier, more affordable and more accessible while reducing e-waste, supporting independent repair businesses and counteracting planned obsolescence.
Will you sign the petition to the FTC in support of Right to Repair? It’s common sense legislation that’s good for people and good for the planet. That’s a fix we can get behind.
Stuff breaks. Wear and tear is normal, but throwing away otherwise functional devices shouldn’t be. Rather than sending broken items to the landfill or paying companies an arm and a leg to fix them, we should have the right to repair our own devices.
And yet, product manufacturers intentionally make repair difficult. Think appliances, cell phones, laptops, tablets, medical devices and farm equipment. Electronics companies monopolize access to their service know-how, tools, and parts so that consumers are reliant on them for fixes. They churn out software updates that slow older devices. Companies have perfected planned obsolescence. Have you ever tried to repair an item only to find out that an upgrade is cheaper or a better deal? All this so that we cycle through and buy more of their Stuff.
Today’s gadgets are easy to break, impractical to repair and quick to be obsolete.
Along with accelerated consumption comes more waste. But we can stop this cycle by fixing things instead of throwing them away, thereby reducing landfill and electronic waste.
How does this policy work?
Our partners at iFixit and PIRG asked the US federal government to regulate Right to Repair, petitioning the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to initiate a rulemaking. Now, the FTC has opened up a public comment period to gauge support.
This is a key early step to moving a federal repair law forward. We need to show the FTC just how popular Right to Repair is, and counter industry opposition. With enough support, the FTC will respond to our petition with a draft rule.
What are we specifically asking for in this legislation? Here's how companies could make repair easier and more widely available:
- Accessibility of Consumable Components: Parts that routinely wear out, like batteries, should be replaceable and readily available for the product’s entire lifespan.
- Availability of Common Parts: Components prone to wear and tear should be easily replaceable.
- Freedom of Repair Choice: Consumers should have the liberty to choose their repair provider or opt for DIY solutions.
- Sustained Product Support: Even after a product is discontinued, its key functions should remain intact, with repairs possible through independent shops.
- Interchangeability of Identical Components: Components from identical devices should be interchangeable without needing manufacturer intervention (to counter parts pairing).
- Protection of Consumer Privacy: Independent repair shops should not be mandated to disclose customers’ personal information to manufacturers.
Dear Federal Trade Commissioners,
It’s getting harder to fix things, and that is a big problem. Companies design glued-together and unfixable products, use software to block repairs and otherwise make it challenging to fix our stuff. It leads to higher repair costs or more frequent replacement -- billions of dollars from consumers and piles of electronic waste.
I am adding my voice in support of the FTC taking immediate action to support Americans’ Right to Repair. Thank you.
Want to learn more?
Watch our animated short: