By Taylor Viens
Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-Hillsborough) hit a San Francisco mattress firm this week to launch a tour underscoring her call for a stronger commitment to American manufacturing.
Robin McRoskey Azevedo, 70, is the third generation of McRoskeys to run the McRoskey Mattress Company, San Francisco’s longest-running local manufacturer.
And her McRoskey Mattress Co. was this week’s first stop on the Speier “Made in America” tour.
Speier’s visit aimed at underscoring advocacy for American industry, spearheading job-creating legislation such as the Small Business Jobs Act.
The congresswoman said she aims to “find ways to incentivize companies to bring manufacturing back [to America.]“ She said the best way to create jobs is to, ” [buy] products being built by your neighbor, by a kid who just graduated from college. We need to see ‘Made in America’ more.”
Robin McRoskey’s mattress factory perfectly fit Speier’s bill: born and bred American Manufacturing. Employing 37, every part of the firm’s mattresses are locally made on 1400 Minnesota St. in SoMa.
McCroskey’s a strong proponent of American-made products — she argued that her mattresses simply wouldn’t be the product her customers know and love if it wasn’t made in San Francisco.
Indeed, she’s such a strong defender of locally made products that she, “doesn’t even want to outsource to the East Bay.”
Despite an ailing economy, McRoskey remains “optimistic” about America’s recovery.
Kate Sofis, the founding executive director of SFMade, (a non-profit that supports San Francisco’s manufacturing sector), explained that San Francisco’s manufacturing sector is growing rapidly, and is now home to over 350 companies.
Sofis said studies show firms engaging in local manufacturing have grown 10% in San Francisco, while those which relied on outsourcing did not see as much growth.
The goal of SFMade parallels the Congresswoman’s endeavors to re-energize American industry, she said, but on a local level.
The Congresswoman announced her plans to introduce a bill mandating manufactures to disclose what percentage of their product was made in the U.S.A, another part of her “Made in America” initiative.
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