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Iron Workers members protest at Wilkes University

08.13.12

AUGUST 2012 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton edition of The Union News

Iron Workers members protest at Wilkes University

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSSWB@AOL.COM

REGION, July 28th- Members of the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers Union Local 489, Brown Street in Yatesville, picketed in front of the new Wilkes University science building construction site recently because of the hiring of nonunion out-of-town construction workers for the project.

The project is valued at $35 million and the Union is disappointed the Wilkes-Barre located University hired a contractor from out of the area, which in turn employs workers from outside the region, stated Kevin McHugh, Business Manager of Local 489.

Iron Workers members place structural steel in place in building construction.

Mr. McHugh stated the contractor hired for the new science building is from the Lancaster area, and he questions why a local higher education institution would not insist that local workers be hired for a project. “Are guys could have really used the work,” said Mr. McHugh.

According to Drew Simpson, Representative for the International Brotherhood of Carpenters Union Local 645, one of the Union’s signatory contractors was hired for the project and his members will get work at the 72,500 square-foot science building. “We are good there,” stated Mr. Simpson.

John Gatto, Assistant Business Manager of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) District 21 in Drums, told the newspaper his members have also been hired for both the painting and dry-walling portion of the project.

Mr. McHugh pointed-out that when out-of-town workers are hired for local building projects, those workers take the earnings made here back to their home regions to spend the money, which does nothing for the local economy.

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