TRADES NL RAISING CONCERNS AT CONSTRUCTION SITES AMID COVID-19

News Release

TRADES NL RAISING CONCERNS AT CONSTRUCTION SITES AMID COVID-19

March 20, 2020 – Today, Trades NL is expressing concerns with the continued operation of construction sites in light of the current circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

Respecting that contractors are making strong efforts to create controlled work environments, Trades NL is not seeing a scaling down of some projects where there are a large number of workers in a very confined workplace, and this is concerning.

“Yesterday we wrote the Minister of Health asking him to engage his officials and officials from the Chief Medical Officer to review the West White Rose project site and determine if the operation meets all the special measures set out by government in the public health emergency.”

  • Darin King, Executive Director, Trades NL

The West White Rose project currently has over 600 trade workers on site, which is expected to increase to over 1,400 with the commencement of the next concrete slip pour scheduled for April 6, 2020. In addition to this project, there are other projects around the province having construction workers often in close quarters, moving frequently between sites and sharing tools.

“At a time when the Province’s Public Health Emergency is asking people to practice social distancing and that gatherings of 50 people or more are not allowed, we still have job sites where our workers are required to work shoulder to shoulder.  In short, we are asking government to use their resources and protocols to reassure our members that it is safe to work at these construction sites.

  • Darin King, Executive Director, Trades NL

Trades NL understand that the scaling back of projects will have a financial consequence to skilled trade workers, but ultimately right now our number one concern is the health and safety of the workers.

Trades NL is an umbrella labour organization which promotes and coordinates the interests of 16 building and construction trades unions, representing more than 18,000 skilled trades workers in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. Our members are highly qualified, very productive and extremely safe.

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Media Contact:

Corey Parsons

Manager of Communications & External Affairs

709-832-5116

cparsons@tradesnl.com