A skyrocketing number of construction-related deaths has prompted the demand of information on recent accidents from NYC officials and labor groups.
Specifically, these groups want the city to classify the growing numbers by specifying whether the jobs being completed were on union or non-union sites.
Advocates have long argued that union workers are not only more skilled, but also safer on a job site. However, the lack of information on the job sites where injuries have occurred has made those claims difficult to confirm or deny.
“Tracking it may actually be helpful in finding out what’s actually going on,” said Councilman Jumaane Williams, who chairs the Committee on Housing and Buildings.
Williams went on to say that the statistics could provide critical data that tells city officials which workers are safe and which are not.
The construction boom may be great for the industry, but the skyrocketing number of deaths and injuries has led to stop-work orders all over the city.
However, the debate between the qualifications of union and nonunion workers isn’t new. In fact, they first surfaced with the 2015 death of 22-year-old hardhat Carlos Moncayo, an Ecuadoran immigrant who was killed at a Meatpacking District construction site.
The city experienced an increase in construction deaths that year, as well.
However, another city is experiencing construction concerns, though not as serious as New York’s.
A flashing construction sign in Chicago was recently hacked to display a disparaging message about the city’s mayor.
The sign read, “Rahm Lies, Children Die.”
Apparently, it wasn’t the first time a construction sign had been hacked in the area, either.
In October 2015 a similar message was put on another construction sign and displayed for all to see.
The only question now is whether or not the hacker will come forward. Both instances involved the speedy removal of the disparaging messages.
Unfortunately, New York’s problems won’t be solved so easily. Approximately 98% of privately owned buildings are constructed in permit-issuing areas, but there’s no way to tell if they’re union or nonunion sites without data released by the city.