Viewing: All Entries
of 1

Workers' Memorial Day Posted by on

Workers' Memorial Day
Mourn for the Dead and Fight for the Living
Thursday, April 26, 2012

Seven months after a tornado struck Western Massachusetts in 2011, the storm claimed its final victim. 19-year-old college freshman James Ivanov was on winter break putting up a West Springfield house destroyed by the storm when he fell four stories to his death. That same year, Luis Tenezaca Palaguachi, a 25-year-old roofer, was working on a triple-decker home in New Bedford, when he lost his balance and fell three stories, later dying of his injuries. The employers of these young men failed to provide life-saving fall protection – a grave safety violation that costs lives.

To call attention to needless workplace injuries, illnesses, and deaths, please join MassCOSH for:

Workers Memorial Day Public Commemoration
Thursday, April 26, 2012

12:00 – 1:15 PM
In front of the State House
24 Beacon Street, Boston
(rain location call 315-546-6391 for info.)

There is still time to participate in MassCOSH’s first annual Roses to Remember.

By participating in Roses to Remember, you can honor workers who lost their lives and support efforts to halt unsafe conditions by contributing $15 or more to MassCOSH today. For every donation received, MassCOSH will place a rose at the foot of our Workers’ Memorial Day memorial in your name. Your donation will directly fund MassCOSH’s efforts to ensure that every working person can return home to their loved ones from work healthy and sound each and every day.

Learn more about making a donation by visiting the Mass COSH website by clicking here

Donations made by the deadline on April 21 will be recognized with a rose in that donors name. If you have any questions, please contact Membership Coordinator Jeff Newton at

TAGS: Boston, Events, Safety

Earth Day Recycling Program Posted by on

 In recognition of Earth Day 2012 the New England Carpenters Training Fund is sponsoring a FREE electronics Recycling on Monday, April 23, 2012 at the New England Carpenters Training Center (NECTC), 13 Holman Rd, Millbury, MA 01527.

Items may be dropped off between the hours of 7:00 AM and 2:30 PM (any day this week or on Monday, April 23).

Please call the NECTC at 508-792-5443 to let them know if you will participating so they have an idea of when you will arrive and the items you will be bringing.

The following items will be accepted.

• PC’s/Laptops
• Monitors (CRT & LCD)
• Terminals
• Servers
• Wires and Cables
• Fax Machines
• Printers
• Power Supplies
• VCR, DVDs, CD’s, floppies, camcorders
• Electrical Equipment
• Stereo Equipment and components
• Server Racks
• Projectors
• Photocopiers
• Communication Equipment
• Networking equipment
• Cell Phones
• Telecom Equipment

****We will not accept TV’s as there is a charge for them

Demonstrations against Sandoval continue Posted by on

Carpenters in Connecticut protested at the New London Plaza Hotel against Sandoval Construction of North Carolina. The area standards picket line highlighted the company’s practice of paying wages and benefits that are lower than the industry standard in the New London area. The company was also issued a Stop Work Order by the Connecticut Department of Labor for not having proper workers’ compensation coverage. posted a story about the event

Boston: The Year of the Crane Posted by on

The office of Mayor Thomas Menino released the following video about construction projects in the City of Boston, terming 2012 the “Year of the Crane”. The video highlights the $3.4 billion in projects currently under construction along with an additional $14 billion in approved projects.

Resident raises concerns, reaches out Posted by on

A Stamford Connecticut resident wrote in to the Stamford Patch to voice her concerns about the Harbor Point project being developed by Carl Kuehner's Building and Land Technology (BLT) in a letter posted earlier this week. Carol Ann McClean writes that Dallas-based subcontractor Baker Concrete Construction has brought in a crew of workers from Texas, when there is a pool of local residents looking for work.

“Baker Concrete Construction does not employ skilled, licensed, local Connecticut parents from our state, who live locally and have been out of work for years. Instead, our streets are lined with Texas license plates, and I know these vehicles are not going home to Texas every night...”

She also speaks about workers’ compensation and unemployment violations and details concerns about various violations she sees in reference to the Harbor Point Infrastructure Act.

She writes, “For a corporation like BLT, Harbor Point, who gets these enormous tax breaks for the special tax district, (that would be a whole other lengthy explanation on the amazing deal they are getting) you would think that they would be concerned with following the rules, ordinances, statues etc on every issue as they are required, I have come to find it is the complete opposite.”

The Harbor Point site has been the subject of repeated demonstrations by union carpenters calling attention to the presence of subcontractors on site who do not pay area standard wages and benefits for carpenters on all of their projects.

You can read McClean’s letter in its entirety here

Carpenters demonstrate against Sandoval Posted by on

Carpenters in Connecticut have been protesting at the new London Plaza Hotel (formerly the Radisson Hotel) against Sandoval Construction of North Carolina. The company does not meet area standards for wages and benefits. It was also issued a Stop Work Order by the Connecticut Department of Labor last week for not having proper workers' compensation coverage.

The New London Patch posted a story, photos and video of the event.


NERCC calls for harsher penalties for those not buying workers' comp Posted by on

The New England Regional Council of Carpenters and other industry groups are calling on the Massachusetts legislature to make it a felony for employers to fail to purchase workers compensation insurance for their employees. Senate Bill 915, sponsored by Senator Katherine Clark (D-Melrose) and Majority Whip Ronald Mariano (D-Quincy) also has the backing of Attorney General Martha Coakley.

Operating without workers' compesnation insurance is currently a misdemeanor, punishable by upt oa year in prison or a find of up to $1,500. The new law would make the felongy punishapble by up to five years in state prison, two-and-a-half years in jail or a fine of up to $10,000.

NERCC Political Director Steve Joyce said that although union carpenters are always covered by workers' compensation insurance, they are still hurt by those who cheat.

"In an industry where work most often goes to whoever submits the lowest price, any contractor who does not purchase workers' compensation coverage has a competitive advantage right from the start over contractors who follow the law and have coverage," he said. "That negatively impacts any carpenter that works for a legitmate contractor. We're not looking to hurt all employers, we value the role they play in creating jobs. We just want everyone to comply with the law when they do it."

Even the Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM), a group that lobbies for businesses, support the bill. In a story by the State House News Service, John Regan, AIM's Executive Vice President described the current situation as unfair to too many.

"Their faliure to have that insurance in place means that if workers working for them get injured, the rest of the employer commnity pays the bill" and that making failure to have coverage a felony "reflects the seriousness of the issue, and conveys how important it is that coverage be in place."

According to the SHNS story, the Massachusetts Department of Industrial Accidents has reported more than 1,000 cses costing the worekrs compensation fund $26 million in the last five years becuase their employer didn't have worers' compensation coverage. In recent years the department has routinely issued Stop Work Orders against more than 3,000 employer found to be operating without workers' compensation coverage.

The Union connection in Haiti Posted by on

For over a year, union carpenters and other trades workers in New England have been lending their time and valuable skills to assist in the construction of a hospital in Mirebalais, Haiti. After the devastating earthquake, the hospital is a source of hope in many ways. NERCC's Mark Erlich recently visited Haiti and wrote a piece for CommonWealth magazine about this amazing project.

Click here to see pictures taken by Mark Erlich during his trip.