PeopleForBikes Advocates for Bikes Amid Growing COVID-19 Disruption
March 23, 2020
BOULDER, CO (March 23, 2020) — Responding to the dramatic changes in day-to-day life caused by the spread of COVID-19, PeopleForBikes is working to support industry partners, suppliers, retailers, advocates and individual riders as they navigate a world of new rules and restrictions.
“The bike industry stands with the rest of the world in supporting our health care workers and first responders in protecting all of us in these difficult times,” said Jenn Dice PeopleForBikes COO. “We know that bikes offer an important form of transportation and recreation when practicing social distancing, getting essential service workers where they need to go and providing those staying home a safe and healthy activity. Our team is committed to providing members and the greater bicycling community with the tools necessary to navigate this uncertain time.”
Last week, the organization asked many state governors to consider designating bicycle retail as essential business and bicycle riding as essential transportation and sent a letter to the National Economic Council requesting a suspension of Section 301 tariffs. With small businesses comprising more than 90 percent of the bicycle industry, PeopleForBikes’s team in Washington is lobbying for federal government support of the bike industry. Additionally, PeopleForBikes partnered with like-minded organizations to endorse a statement by the National Recreation and Parks Association asking for continued access for appropriate outdoor recreation, a letter distributed by the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable and congressional testimony submitted by the Americans for Free Trade Coalition on a variety of economic recovery initiatives.
The organization is also providing resources and guidance for bike retailers seeking essential business status. Bike shops provide critical maintenance services for bike riders, support essential travel needs, and provide both a necessary mode of transportation and a way to be active while still practicing social distancing. PeopleForBikes recognizes that some shops may decide to stay closed for health, safety and economic reasons.
“We know the bicycling community is feeling the effects of this pandemic, but we are encouraged that many people are newly discovering how bikes can be both a smart way to get where you need to go and a great form of recreation with physical and mental benefits,” said Dice. “We’re watching the COVID-19 spread closely and doing everything we can to support people who need to bike as well as bike businesses of all sizes and kinds.”
PeopleForBikes reminds all individuals to respect the rules of social distancing while riding their bikes; stay close to home and avoid unnecessary travel; avoid risky rides that may, in the event of an accident, place an undue burden on health care facilities; and look to their local and state leaders for guidance about appropriate restrictions on recreational riding.
PeopleForBikes will continue to monitor changes to local, state, and federal policies as they relate to the COVID-19 spread.
PeopleForBikes is making better biking for everyone by uniting millions of individuals, thousands of businesses, and hundreds of communities. Because when people ride bikes, great things happen. Join us at PeopleForBikes.org.