Today’s DJC includes a fine article by Sam Bennett regarding the construction industry’s concerns regarding a recent Department of Labor proposal that contractors who do federal work follow a new system for hiring disabled workers and veterans. That article is here.
As a follow up, I want to make sure everyone is aware of Helmets to Hardhats, a national, web-based program that connects National Guard, Reserve and transitioning active-duty military members with quality career training and employment opportunities within the construction trades. The program, created a decade ago, is administered by the Center for Military Recruitment, Assessment and Veterans Employment, a non-profit 501(c)(3) joint labor-management committee.
Employers are required to participate in “proven apprenticeship training programs that are registered and approved by applicable federal and state authorities.” However, it is not limited to union training programs and employers.
The Construction Industry Training Council (CITC) of Washington, which is an approved H2H training program that AGC of Washington, ABC and others sponsor, runs an open-shop registered apprenticeship program with more than 400 apprentices in several craft programs.
According to its website, “H2H encourages all responsible employers who have construction-related career opportunities to apply for acceptance into our program.” Employers must meet certain criteria including: “access to a quality and federally-recognized registered apprentice program, a permanent system to ensure employment and training opportunities, formal curriculum and instructor training programs, related training and an on-the-job training program, an affirmative action program, and a positive record of caring for the welfare of workers as evidenced by health insurance, pension benefits and workers’ compensation coverage.”
Helmets to Hardhats was created because the industry knows that the nation’s veterans can serve as a good pool of potential construction craftworkers, but also understands that making the connections with the nation’s veterans as they leave service can be difficult.