Let's Work Together to Address Workforce Development
As we wrap up the year at TCLG, I’ve been thinking about the connection between worker readiness, specifically in the construction industry, and the components of a strong economy that works for everyone.
Recently, I sat down with
Phoenix Business Journal Publisher Ray Schey, Kitchell Project Director Scott Root, and BeachFleischman PC Accounting and Assurance Shareholder Bryan Eto to discuss Arizona’s construction industry, mainly workforce development, and its impact on economic growth in Arizona.
Scott, Bryan and I agreed that a healthy construction industry depends on having a pool of highly skilled workers ready to build our cities and towns. During our discussion, we kept coming back to the central big question: How do we train the next generation of construction workers to address the immediate needs of the industry and the long-term needs of our region? Our answer: Potential training program partnerships between property owners, developers, contractors, community leaders, and labor could provide viable solutions to the ongoing skilled labor shortage.
I’m a firm believer in proven apprenticeship programs that have trained generations of skilled workers. These programs graduate students at rates higher than the average four-year university, with no debt. Apprentices not only learn from seasoned and skilled professionals at high-tech training centers, but they also work side-by-side with the men and women who are in the field every day. Nothing can replace the hands-on, real-world knowledge gained by being an apprentice on a job site. These programs also emphasize quality workmanship and job-site safety, contributing to creating safe and secure communities for residents and workers, and their families.
A healthy and trained workforce is the foundation of a strong economy. For generations, construction work has been a path to the middle class, especially for men and women who are attracted to careers that require skill, precision and innovation. These workers are in demand.
Let’s turn these lively conversations about workforce development into solid action plans that support quality training programs, provide opportunities for workers, and strengthen our economy.
Wishing you and your family a joyous holiday season.
ASARCO mine and construction trades workers are fighting for a contract that includes fair wages, safe working conditions, and benefits that help them provide for their families. When jobsite safety and worker training are weakened, and cost of living wages are ignored, our entire community suffers. Strikes are difficult for working families and communities, however, together we bargain for a safe and productive workplace.
Workers on the picket line are running low on supplies and could use your help! Please consider dropping off food, water, firewood and gift cards for the workers who are fighting to make a better life for their families. The Hayden Complex is located at 6094 North Asarco Road, Hayden, AZ 85135.
New Year, New DOL Paid Leave Rule for Federal Contractors
As of January 1, 2020, certain employers that contract with the Federal Government must provide their employees with up to seven days of paid sick leave annually, according to the DOL’s final rule of Executive Order 13706, Establishing Paid Sick Leave for Federal Contractors.
Mark Cardenas has joined TCLG as a Legislative Affairs Specialist. Mark will represent clients at the local, state, and national level, and assist them in building productive relationships that further their missions. As a former member of the Arizona House of Representatives and an active member of the community, Mark has a solid track record of working with leaders and stakeholders to support policies that protect Arizona’s most vulnerable residents, prioritize public safety, uphold the integrity of the criminal justice system, and protect the environment.
READ MARK'S BIO