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Construction & Design

Multilingual campaign aiming to keep immigrant workers safe

Buildings Commissioner La Rocca, along with representatives from NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island, the Building Trades Employers Association, and Turner Construction Company, unveiling new multilingual construction worker safety training signs in Coney Island, Brooklyn.

Buildings Commissioner Melanie E. La Rocca announced that multilingual notices about safety-training requirements must be posted at the exits of New York City’s larger construction sites.

The new mandate requires the signs to be posted in every language that is used by workers to communicate at each specific construction site, and is part of the agency’s ongoing campaign to raise awareness about the upcoming deadlines for workers and supervisors to obtain site safety training as required under Local Law 196 of 2017. Commissioner La Rocca unveiled one of the new multilingual signs in Coney Island, Brooklyn, at the construction site for a new 11-story hospital building at NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island.

Starting on December 1, workers at large, complex construction sites will be required to have at least 30 hours of site-safety training, and supervisors must have at least 62 hours of training. On September 1, 2020, workers will be required to have 40 hours of training.“Keeping workers and the public safe is our agency’s highest priority. Having signs at the exits of construction sites is fitting: at the end of every day, workers will be reminded to get the training they need to come home safely to their families. What’s more, because the people who are building New York City’s future come from around the world, we have created a template for these new signs that can be downloaded in 14 languages,” said Commissioner La Rocca.

“BTEA Contractors are fully engaged in training our workers so that New York City has the best, safest, construction workforce possible,” said Building Trades Employers Association President and CEO Louis J. Coletti.

“We appreciate the collaborative efforts of the Buildings Department, under the leadership of Commissioner La Rocca, throughout the implementation of Local Law 196. This training is going to be an invaluable tool moving forward toward making construction work as safe as it can be, and, making sure that all of our workers go home each night.”

To meet the upcoming training requirements, workers and supervisors can obtain safety training from any DOB-approved course provider, which can be sorted by location and available language using our interactive course provider map, or by taking or OSHA-30 classes from an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) certified training provider. In an effort to make this training more accessible, applications are also now open for the Construction Site Safety Reimbursement Program, a one-time grant through the NYC Department of Small Business Services (SBS) for small construction firms, with 1-15 employees, to offset the cost of site safety training.

This is the latest phase of the Department’s ongoing initiative to inform workers, contractors, developers, and property owners of Local Law 196.

Previous outreach and education efforts have included a week of action with five-borough direct outreach to workers and a subway and print ad campaign and a food truck tour.

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