A new bill passed the New York City Council last Wednesday to require more safety training for construction workers. The bill demands that workers receive 40 hours of safety training, and it’s hoped that such measures will help prevent deaths and injuries on the job.
Construction unions have pushed for new bill, which unions believe will make job places safer. However, opponents of the legislation say that it isn’t practical — and that it will cost too much money and take too much time for employers to train all of their workers.
According to the Council speaker, who was in favor of the measure, “Too many fatalities have occurred on construction sites in this city.” The speaker said that the legislative body was not going to simply do nothing in the face of so many unnecessary accidents. She said that doing nothing would be irresponsible and negligent.
According to the final version of the new law, safety training will be required for all construction workers. However, for workers who have completed a qualifying apprenticeship, they will not need to complete such training. Workers will also be permitted to begin their work following 10 hours of training, and then finish their remaining 30 hours of training while working.
It’s hoped that the new safety requirement will work to reduce the current death and injury statistics at New York construction sites. Still, there is no way to completely protect any construction worker against the threat of injury. This is why the New York workers’ compensation system exists: to provide workers with money to pay for medical care following a serious workplace accident.
Source: New York Daily News, “Bill to up safety training for construction workers passes City Council amid hardhat death wave,” Oct. 31, 2017