Growing concerns for public safety have prompted NGA to begin a campaign calling for states to require mandatory licensing for all glass installers. Several of NGA's affiliated state chapters have also joined the effort to promote licensure in their states.
"This is a necessary step to ensure the safety of the American public," said Phil James, NGA president and CEO. "We are surrounded by glass in our every day lives-whether in our cars, homes, or workplace. Glass is a beautiful and versatile material, but if installed improperly, it can have dangerous consequences. Glass installation is often not taken seriously, but poor installation practices can literally mean the difference between life and death.
"It is our goal for all 50 states to require its glass installers be licensed and that they be licensed through training and testing," James said.
States with only fee-based licensing allow installers to simply pay a fee to acquire a license and do not have to demonstrate that they have the knowledge or skills to perform safe and accurate work.
"Fee-based licensing gives consumers a false sense of security. Our mission is to promote licensing through training and testing to make sure best practices are being used for glass installation work. The bottom line is that the safety of the American public is at stake here; absolutely no one should be allowed to install glass without proper training and testing," James said.
To launch its new legislative initiative, NGA will host a special Member Forum on Sept. 12, 2003 at its upcoming National Auto Glass Conference & EXPO. James; Chris Tate, NGA's 2003-2004 chairman; Mike O'Hara, president of the Ohio Glass Association; and Leo Cyr, NGA's new vice president for auto glass will lead a panel discussion to inform NGA members on what James calls, "NGA's most important initiative ever."