There are a number of factors affecting the future of the building trades and labor as a whole. From outreach events to decisions made by the federal government, the future of labor will be affected.
Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council (C/COBCTC) Executive Secretary-Treasurer Dorsey Hager joined America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss the upcoming Senate runoff election in Georgia, the Driving Futures Program and getting more women into the building trades.
Winning back the Senate
Hager discussed the importance of having two Democrats win the Senate seats up for grabs in Georgia. Without winning the Senate, but winning the White House and retaining the House of Representatives, any legislation is sure to be doomed by a Republican controlled Senate.
The importance of Democrats winning the Senate majority runs deep for the building trades and organized labor as a whole. With a Senate majority, Democrats would be able to impose their will and easily enact desired legislation, such as the PRO Act.
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for the PRO Act, which would make it easier for workers to form a union. Having a union would help workers receive personal protective equipment, hazard pay and other protections throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Driving Futures program
As the need for professional drivers has grown, the C/COBCTC has partnered with the city of Columbus to offer a pre-apprenticeship program designed to introduce local residents to careers in driving.
These are careers that offer a direct path to the middle class, where workers will be able to comfortably provide for their families with livable wages and benefits.
Reaching out to women
Hager wants women to know that they have a place in the building trades.
He discussed the North America’s Building Trades Unions Tradeswomen Build Nations conference, which was held in October. The event is an annual gathering of union tradeswomen, who come together to discuss industry issues and how to get more women involved.
He also discussed a recent outreach event hosted by Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther. During the event, Mayor Ginther reached out to women in central Ohio and made the pitch that the building trades is a great industry for them.