California Assemblymember Susan Talamantes Eggman has introduced the California Right to Repair Act, marking the 19th state to propose pro-consumer repair legislation this year. Though similar bills have been proposed elsewhere without success, supporters give California a better chance of actually passing Right to Repair, while at least one lobbying group has already spoken out against it.
The Right to Repair Act would require electronics makers to offer repair information and parts to third-party repair providers and product owners. Its goal is to empower customers to repair their own devices, or obtain repairs from companies that aren’t necessarily authorized by the original manufacturer.
Given that many Right to Repair bills have been proposed in recent years only to stagnate in state legislatures, we asked iFixit what made California’s bill more likely to pass. “California has a long history of pioneering pro-consumer and pro-environment legislation,” said iFixit’s Kay-Kay Clapp, citing electronics recycling and plastic bag laws. “That gives this bill some legs. Additionally, this bill is supported by a broad coalition of folks with a track record of success — the EFF and Consumers Union.”
“People shouldn’t be forced to ‘upgrade’ to the newest model every time a replaceable part on their smartphone or home appliance breaks,” added Mark Murray, executive director of Californians Against Waste. “These companies are profiting at the expense of our environment and our pocketbooks as we become a throw-away society that discards over 6 million tons of electronics every…