Going back to 2013, a small group of independent data center hardware repair companies founded the Right to Repair movement. Many of these founders were leaders within the Third Party Hardware Maintenance industry, and chose to fight back against new OEM restrictions to limit access to firmware updates so these service providers could help large data centers successfully extend the life if their IT hardware. After a multi-year battle, New York has become the first state in the country to pass an electronics right-to-repair law, an historic win for consumers and independent repair shops across the U.S., not just in New York.
New York’s decision has the potential to seismically shift the power balance between consumers and electronics manufacturers. This decision can also dramatically reduce e-waste from smartphones and laptops to large data center servers and data storage devices.
The bill overwhelmingly passed the New York senate on Wednesday by a vote of 59 to 4. It passed the New York Assembly on Friday afternoon by a vote of 145-1. This wide margin should be celebratory for electronics consumers, business owners and independent electronics repair companies. It will now go to Gov. Kathy Hochul for final passage. The bill is the most expansive consumer rights legislation to pass in the United States in recent memory, and is the result of countless hours of grassroots campaigning from consumers and consumer rights groups.
Repair.org Press Conference – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7TQDwSIA7E
“Thank you to the SIA (https://www.servicenetwork.org/) for standing up Repair.org and contributing to the effort since our founding in 2013. We couldn’t have accomplished this without SIA and its member base,” stated Todd Bone (XSi president and founder, SIA board member, and founding board member of Repair.org). “This is a significant win for the Third Party Maintenance industry, IT sustainability, reduced e-waste and the circular economy! It is a major step in creating a level playing field for service providers which greatly benefits end-users and IT decision-makers.”
SIA Executive Director, Claudia Betzner added, “It is incredibly rewarding to have observed a marketplace concern evolve into an impassioned group of founding members who committed to a mission and stuck with it for so long. Change to correct wrongs often begin with a few, but to have watched these “few” build such a powerful nationwide – and worldwide movement – has been awe-inspiring. SIA is honored to have played a part in the facilitation of this movement. We are also pleased for our member base, who stand to see operational benefit from huge successes like this one.”
SIA Members should actively promote this news to their clients in New York and the rest of the United States. Massachusetts and other states are still in play to pass legislation this year. Let’s keep the fire going!
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