July 1, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
North America’s Building Trades Unions Launch New Office to Advance "High Road" Construction Business Model in Baltimore/Washington, DC/Northern Virginia
New Office Premised Upon Working with Industry, Government and Community Leaders to Leverage Construction Investments to Advance Career Training Opportunities in Skilled Trades
WASHINGTON, DC -- In preparation for an expected and significant increase in construction spending in the greater Baltimore/Washington, DC/Northern Virginia region, North America's Building Trades Unions today announced the opening of a new regional office that will engage industry, government and community leaders for the expressed purpose of helping to leverage construction and development investments in order to address the skilled craft workforce development needs of the regional construction market, as well as the pressing social needs relating to long-term chronic unemployment in historically disadvantaged communities.
This new office, known as C.H.O.I.C.E. - The Community Hub for Opportunities in Construction Employment, will work with the 28 building and construction trades local unions in the greater Baltimore/Washington, DC/Northern Virginia region. These unions collectively represent thousands of skilled craft professionals in the building and construction industry, and they invest tens of millions of dollars annually in the maintenance and operation of over 20 skilled craft apprenticeship training centers across the region.
The guiding mission of C.H.O.I.C.E. will be to work with industry, government and community leaders to raise industry standards and to provide career training opportunities for local residents.
"Our intention with the launch of C.H.O.I.C.E.," said Sean McGarvey, President of North America's Building Trades Unions, "is to put in place a new approach that incorporates the successful implementation of a business model that is premised upon collaboration and partnership with companies, whole industries, local governments and community groups in order to provide measurable value in all that we do."
A recent report by the Baltimore Business Journal depicts a mid-Atlantic regional construction industry that is facing a shortage of skilled craft workers which, in turn, is proving to be a growing concern for developers and contractors, given the region’s increase in new construction projects.
"While recent reports convey a sense of alarm at the potential for skilled worker shortages in this region," said Mark Coles, the Executive Director of C.H.O.I.C.E, "our approach will be to convince the region's business leaders, lawmakers, and community leaders to view this as an opportunity to embark upon a workforce development strategy that not only meets the needs and concerns of developers and construction contractors, but also presents an approach that can move traditionally disadvantaged populations out of hopelessness and despair, and onto a career training path that can lead to a lifetime of economic security."
ABOUT NORTH AMERICA’S BUILDING TRADES UNIONS
North America's Building Trades Unions are an alliance of 14 national and international unions that collectively represent over 3 million skilled craft professionals in the United States and Canada.
ABOUT C.H.O.I.C.E. - The Community Hub for Opportunities in Construction Employment
C.H.O.I.C.E is an office of North America’s Building Trades Unions that is working with the 28 local unions in the greater Baltimore/Washington, DC/Northern Virginia region that represent thousands of skilled craft professionals in the building and construction industry. Its mission is to work with industry, government and community leaders to raise industry standards and provide opportunity. By encouraging public and private investments in the construction industry that will provide continued and increased access to career training and employment, C.H.O.I.C.E will promote opportunities through partnerships in pre-apprenticeship and jointly managed apprenticeship programs throughout the greater Baltimore/Washington, DC/Northern Virginia region while providing value to the industry and strengthening the communities in which we live and work.