Global workwear brand Dickies, in partnership with its parent company, VF Corporation (NYSE: VFC), announced it will manufacture FDA-compliant isolation gowns for hospitals and healthcare workers.
These high-demand personal protective gear garments will be distributed to communities throughout the U.S, in cooperation with federal and state government leaders, the companies said in a news release.
“Dickies has stood alongside generations of workers and in light of these unprecedented times, we’re joining in the effort to help healthcare professionals on the frontlines,” said Denny Bruce, Dickies Global Brand President. “As a heritage brand that goes to work, especially when the work gets tough, we are committed to equipping these workers with the critical medical garments they need to protect themselves as they continue the fight against this pandemic.”
The news release said Dickies is no stranger to shifting its production in times of need to help the greater good. During World War II, the company helped to produce millions of uniforms for the U.S. military, and now, to support healthcare workers on the front lines of COVID-19, Dickies is leveraging VF Corporation’s global supply chain and capabilities by converting several manufacturing facilities to produce urgently needed protective garments.
Production is scheduled to start the week of April 15 and VF Corporation and Dickies expect to produce and deliver 50,000 gowns in May and intend to create production capacity to make up to 675,000 gowns by June and up to 3.4 million by September.
The companies said the isolation gowns will be made with fabric sourced from industry partner Milliken & Company, in accordance with guidelines issued by the FDA.
“We are proud to leverage our global resources and manufacturing expertise in partnership with our Dickies brand to support the fight against COVID-19,” Cameron Bailey, Executive Vice President, Global Supply Chain, VF Corporation, said in the news release.
The production of isolation gowns builds on several other initiatives that both Dickies and VF Corporation have each rolled out in response to COVID-19, including a $1.5 million donation to local communities from The VF Foundation, the private grantmaking organization funded by VF Corporation, and a donation of Dickies branded scrubs to impacted U.S. hospitals in partnership with Careismetic Brands, the largest U.S. supplier of scrubs.