News

Memorial to Capitol builders advances in Legislature

Legislation to install a plaque honoring the workers who built the state Capitol advanced Wednesday in a Senate committee, thanks to the effort of students from the Owatonna school district.

Six students testified before the Senate State Departments and Budget Division, which then laid the measure over for possible inclusion in a budget document. In mid-March, another group of students spoke to a House committee that then approved the legislation. Read more »

Scouts get hands-on lesson in carpentry

More than 100 Girl Scouts learned about carpentry and construction careers at  workshops hosted by the North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters on Saturday. The scouts, in grades 6-8, participated in demonstrations on aspects of carpentry, built their own projects and had the opportunity to ask tradeswomen questions about the construction industry. Twenty-five members of the carpenters union led the workshops. Read more »

New: 52 Spanish Language Handouts & Toolbox Talks (Charlas Informativas de Seguridad Ocupacional)

This collection of 52 Toolbox Talks from CPWR -The Center for Construction Research and Training - has been available in English-only for just over two years and is widely used on construction sites across the country, with more than 100,000 downloads in the first year alone. The Safety Toolbox Talks are guides designed to easily disseminate safety and health information in the workplace. Read more »

Stand-Down for Fall Safety May 2-6, 2016

The National Fall Prevention Safety Stand-Down was conceived by OSHA in 2014 as part of the National Falls Campaign to raise awareness surrounding the severity of fall hazards in construction and the importance of preventing them. In the first two years of the Stand-Down we reached over 3.5 million workers.  May 2-6, 2016 will mark the third year of the event and we hope to make an even bigger impact on fall hazard awareness and prevention. Read more »

Obama administration unveils rules on silica, union-busting

After years of consideration, and brushing aside one final attempt by an industry lobby to derail it, the Obama administration issued a final rule that it says would cut workers’ exposure to harmful silica dust in half.

The silica rule is one of two big-ticket pro-worker rules the administration unveiled the week of March 21. The other would change the definition of when so-called “labor consultants” – otherwise known as “persuaders” and union-busters – must disclose their spending.

 

Stopping silica exposure Read more »

MnDOT contractor who shorted workers $242,000 is convicted of theft by swindle

(article by  StarTribune)  A co-owner of a Twin Cities electrical contracting company has been convicted of cheating nearly two dozen employees out of a total of $242,000 in wages by paying them far less than the law required for their work on a state highway project in the north metro and elsewhere. Laura Plza Read more »

Minnesota issues Adequacy Decision for the PolyMet NorthMet Project

MN Building and Construction Trades Council & MN Chamber of Commerce statement on release of adequacy decision for Polymet’s Northmet project: The hardworking men and women who build and maintain our state and its industries, and the companies that are the backbone of our statewide economy are celebrating today. Read more »

Business-labor partnership tackles wage theft on public projects

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WorkdayMinnesota.org has completed a several months long study on wage theft in Minnesota. The problem is pervasive and widespread throughout the state in many types of work. Two of the studies focused on wage theft in non-union sectors of the building and construction trades. This article addresses partnerships between contractors and building trades unions using prevailing wage as a model.  Read more »

Residential construction industry built on ‘payroll fraud’ model

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WorkdayMinnesota.org has completed a several months long study on wage theft in Minnesota. The problem is pervasive and widespread throughout the state in many types of work. Two of the studies focused on wage theft in non-union sectors of the building and construction trades. This article addresses the problem in residential construction. 

Jose Ramirez had never heard the term “wage theft,” but he knew he was being cheated when a roofing subcontractor refused to pay him. Read more »

AFL-CIO HIT INVESTS $27.7 MILLION INTO ST. PAUL DEVELOPMENT

The AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust (HIT) today announced a $27.7 million investment into the 333 on the Park project in St. Paul, which will transform an aging eight-story office building into 134 market rate multifamily housing units.  The project will create an estimated 190 union construction jobs and 435 total jobs among various business and service sectors in the local community. Read more »