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Open Posting to Building Trades President Sean Mc Garvey –

The following research was disseminated to the leadership of the Building Trades in early 2013. It is based on the direct discussions and information of 483 BM, Agents, Organizer’s and industry sources provided to Labor Rising. This is the only research done regarding this that we are aware of – question is – is the work in the Gulf States the beginning to an end of the Building Trades or an opportunity to ORGANIZE not only the direct work in the area, but as importantly the support infrastructure?

The new Houston Building Trades office should do ongoing analysis to see if the Construction Users Round Table is ultimately using the BT collaboration with the intent to break us. All our eggs are increasingly in fewer and fewer baskets of jobs with just a hand full of companies. Go to and see the companies scrolling across the bottom.

Jumping to #6 and the last paragraph is now coming into focus with the work in the Gulf States.

Consider the following:

1. Major end users, especially CURT, may be compiling multi-year demographical information on our skilled Building Trades workers to include, but not limited to:

a. Time on the road
b. Skills, credentials, licenses, training, etc.
c. Age, background, work history, attendance
d. Temperament
e. Flexibility and multi-craft abilities
f. Union tendencies, i.e., calling Reps, grievances, knowing their rights, etc.
g. Financial and credit strengths and weaknesses
h. Many other diverse aspects of employment

2. Major end users, such as CURT affiliated companies, are major contributors and muscle behind increasing anti-union laws and legislation.

3. Anti-union consultants and attorneys have been busy training not only anti-union contractors on union avoidance, but also have increasingly focused on union contractors becoming double breasted and/or union free altogether.

4. Community colleges and vocational training facilities programs are the single largest growth component in post-secondary education, with a substantial increase in training of Building Trades skills. CURT’s purpose has been to “Empower and enhance the effectiveness of Local User Councils throughout North America”. Local CURT User Councils have a strong level of interest in the skills training of the community colleges as it relates to building trades training.

5. Labor-Management cooperation has afforded CURT, which was formed in 2000; a clear and concise look at the inner philosophy of Building Trades unions, including the personality and habits of individual union leaders – all the way up to senior union leadership.

6. My research indicates that many union contractors claiming to be “going out of business due to the economy” may be planning a legal absence to satisfy legal requirements related to CBA and ERISA fund laws. Many of these former union companies will re-open as anti-union surrogates and/or contractors, with a still intact book of business of clients and contacts, to launch anti-union business initiatives to a welcoming CURT clientele.

Continuing research of 483 connected individuals and groups confirms my first five points. The final 6th point is the lynch pin of intent to put the Building Trades out of business and/or render us virtually powerless.
It appears that the major end users are, among other goals are looking to dramatically reduce labor costs in order to increase their profits. They are working to strategically capture the skills of a percentage of Building Trades workers sufficient enough to man their jobs and train future non-union workers.

I believe there exists a three to six year window that will substantially change construction as we know it, if we ignore our current environment. Waiting on politicians and/or cooperative agreements will only result in further market share decline. The status quo of having increasing number of jobs that have both union and non-union workers on it does not favor the building trades position!

Think Gulf States and the other major work coming up –

Danny L Caliendo
Labor Rising Group

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