NICE Celebrates the Historic Signing of Worker Safety Bill Intro 1447-C

Construction workers across New York City will benefit from increased access to more health and safety training in an effort to reduce workplace fatalities

Today, we stand with New York City Council Members Jumaane Williams and Carlos Menchaca, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Gary LaBarbera from the Building and Construction Trades Council, Charlene Obernauer from the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH) and other allies and supporters to celebrate the historic passage of Intro. 1447-C into law.

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This bill takes an enormous step forward to guarantee more health and safety training for workers on construction sites in New York City, after hundreds of workers have died in workplace accidents over the last decade. We applaud everyone involved for taking this opportunity to stand up for the safety — and very lives — of these workers, who are predominantly immigrants.

We are proud to have been a part of the drafting and final negotiation of this bill, to ensure that migrant workers would be guaranteed access to these mandated trainings and not be excluded due to immigration status.

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Immigrant workers, in particular Latinos, are disproportionately affected by workplace accidents that result in debilitating injuries, or death. In order to truly address the issues of workplace accidents in construction, we all must begin with addressing the needs and issues faced by these excluded workers. In collaboration with unions, politicians, and health and safety organizations, we are proud of the partnership that made this bill possible and will continue to created bridges to ensure the health and safety of all workers.

While we celebrate, we also remain somber in remembrance of our community members who have lost their lives in these last two years. While an important and notable step forward, this is only a first step to curb this epidemic. Employers must be held responsible for their negligent and criminal workplace practices that put workers’ lives at risk; no amount of training will make a difference without true employer accountability across every phase of their projects. As we recognize this victory, we move forward with even more ferocity to ensure safe and just workplaces for all workers.

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