BY SEAN MCGARVEY, OPINION CONTRIBUTOR
04/24/17 04:30 PM EDT
Chuck Goodrich, the Chair of Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), recently slammed Project Labor Agreements (PLAs) for not, as he proclaimed, creating “equal opportunity for the entire construction industry.”
Oh, the irony.
Because at the heart of all PLAs is the concept of “opportunity” – for workers, contractors, businesses, whole communities and, yes, taxpayers.
This theme of “opportunity” was central when nearly 3,000 members of North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) just convened in our nation’s capital to discuss topline policy priorities, including – and especially – the rebuilding of America’s crumbling infrastructure and the need to ensure strong community wage and benefit standards for hard-working Americans
Today, NABTU and its signatory contractors invest more than $1.2 billion annually to fund and operate over 1,600 joint labor-management training centers across the U.S. which, in turn, produce the safest, most highly-skilled, and productive craft workers found anywhere in the world.
Further, NABTU leads the construction industry in innovative workforce development by providing increased opportunities to underserved communities and diversifying the construction workforce through the use of apprenticeship readiness programs and formal apprenticeship training and education.