The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) on Monday announced they have voluntarily adopted rules proposed by Congress to ensure that future clothing for Team USA is made in America.
“After listening to feedback from members of Congress, we have committed, along with our partners at Ralph Lauren, to make future parade uniforms in the United States,” USOC CEO Scott Blackmun said in a statement.
Many members of Congress protested following reports that the Ralph Lauren-designed clothing that Team USA will wear in the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympics were made in China. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J), along with 12 other Senators representing both sides of the aisle, earlier this month announced legislation called the Made in America Act to require that future uniforms worn by Olympians and Paralympians to be made in America.
“I’m incredibly pleased that the USOC has formally adopted the requirements outlined in the Team USA Made in America Act,” Menendez said in a statement. “My goal was to ensure that while our Olympians and Paralympians are representing the best of American athleticism and sportsmanship, they also proudly represent the best of American manufacturing and workmanship. This new policy – which will not be altered without informing the Congress – is a clear win for both America’s athletes and America’s workers.“
According to Menendez’s office, the senator met with the Olympic Committee last week to discuss the agreement. The USOC has committed to manufacturing all future uniforms in the United States unless essential materials are not available or obtaining them would cause “undue delay.”
Team USA will still wear the China-manufactured uniforms in this year’s Olympics. The opening ceremonies are set for Friday in London.