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New deadline for mandatory construction safety training

As such a popular place for real estate, New York City always has construction going on. It usually entails massive properties, such as skyscrapers, with elaborate designs for aesthetic appeal. Even without new projects, construction companies will be busy getting existing buildings up to code for new emissions legislation. This means more construction workers' lives will be at risk, a serious problem that continues to plague the city.

The city responded by mandating safety training in 2017, Local Law 196, to increase prevention and decrease accidents. While it is not a perfect program, its goal is worthy. It has also recently gone through a change.

Deadline extension

The overall deadline for completion of all training, September 2020, remains the same. However, the deadline for the second stage has gone through two extensions. It was originally December 1, 2018, then got pushed back to June 1, 2019. The most recent update has the date now at a full year past the original deadline: December 1, 2019. Meeting this requirement has proven to be more challenging than expected.

Pros and cons

What does this update mean for you? The good news is that it allows more time for safety training to occur, increasing the chances that it will happen and translate to higher safety for workers, especially for those who previously had limited access to training.

The extra time is also the bad news, in that in the meantime, supervisors and other workers may still operate under insufficient training and not implement proper preventive measures. Many avoidable deaths will continue until all education is fully complete.

There also exist many issues of fraud, so companies appear compliant in time. This may mean acquiring fake certification and cards, going through fake training or one person completing all classes for the whole company.

Just because the deadline is later does not mean employers should procrastinate until the end. Construction workers have the right to a safe work environment now.

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