Workers Across Los Angeles Proclaim That Measure S Is Bad for Local Jobs

02/09/2017

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, February 9, 2017

Contact: Gabriella Landeros, 213-446-8801, gabriella@thelafed.org
Anne-Marie Otey, 310-497-1554, amotey@laocbuildingtrades.org

Stops the Progress of Affordable Homes and Good Jobs LA Voted for Last November

Los Angeles, CA – Today, members of the Build Better LA Coalition who fought to pass Proposition JJJ in November, joined local apprentices just starting their careers to announce the detrimental impact Measure S would have on jobs and wages if it passes.

If adopted, Measure S will ban the construction of affordable housing at a time when Angelenos are struggling to find a home they can afford and eliminate over 12,000 good jobs with benefits. It would cut off opportunities for apprentices, who need on-the-job training as part of their education. Measure S will also be detrimental to Los Angeles residents looking for work.

“Last year, LA voted on good, local jobs. Measure S would cut off those opportunities for apprentices, who need the on-the-job training as part of their education. It will also be detrimental to residents looking for work,” said Rusty Hicks, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO and convener of the Build Better LA Coalition. “It’s clear to the 800,000 workers we represent that Measure S is bad for jobs, bad for workers, and for Los Angeles’ economy.”

“Measure S is going to hurt working Angelenos,” said Chris Hannan, representative of the Los Angeles Building Trades. “The Building Trades are one of the most diverse workforces in today’s economy. We are also one of the most locally based. We target local residents, in the poorest ZIP Codes, for hire in many of our projects. We’ve seen huge growth in employment for these residents. And these are lifetime careers with good pay, benefits and retirement. By banning Los Angeles projects, Measure S is actually targeting these folks for job loss. What kind of neighbors are these Measure S proponents?”

Angela Diaz-Valencia, native of Los Angeles, journeyman member of United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 78, and an instructor in the Plumbers’ apprenticeship says, “My students come from different walks of life with many obstacles to overcome, but the one thing they all have in common is the strong desire to have a career in the Pipe Trades. Measure S will take those opportunities away. And LA voters should know, those living in Los Angeles will actually feel the impact the most. Do they know that we are reaching out to hire local residents? People who live in some of the most poverty-stricken ZIP Codes in the city? These are the residents who will lose their jobs because of Measure S.”

“Being involved with the organizing department of my industry has taught me that setting a solid foundation for our young residents within our local communities should be an everyday commitment for all of us. To even think of putting a moratorium on growth and expansion throughout the City of Los Angeles is like telling our citizens that we don’t care about the future of our young and upcoming workers, who want to see job opportunities now and in the near future. “NO” on Measure S is the most obvious answer. Together we can build, create, and expand a better and prosperous Los Angeles,” said John Ferruccio, Director of Organizing for Southern California Pipe Trades District Council No. 16

“I started my trade as a 21-year-old single parent, and building a career while raising a child isn’t easy. I need this on-the-job training in order to complete my apprenticeship. Our curriculum is designed to go hand-in-hand with on-the-job training. To get this training, I need a job to go to. Measure S halts construction, putting Angeleno apprentices of all trades out of work. You have to work in order to understand what you are learning,” said Aaron Marlowe, fifth year apprentice with United Association Local Union 250 Steamfitters. “I broke through many barriers as a woman working in a male-dominated trade, only to see a ballot measure like this threaten jobs? We need more good paying blue collar jobs. My colleagues and I are ready to work. Don’t let Measure S stop us.”

“After being incarcerated for 27 years, I was able to get back on my feet and re-enter back into civilian life because of the opportunity to be an apprentice and gain on-the-job training. Measure S will eliminate $640 million in local wages every year. Besides being a father of four and grandfather of six, I also take care of my 84-year-old mother. I know firsthand where those losses will hit the hardest. That’s money that keeps my family housed and fed,” said Charles Slay, second year apprentice with International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 11.

“The job opportunities that my fellow apprentices and journeymen have are so important. As apprentices, a large portion of our education comes from on-the-job training. Measure S would take away the opportunity we have to work in Los Angeles as skilled tradesmen, and it would be a loss for the City,” said Ashley Kollar, fifth year apprentice with United Association Local Union 250 Steamfitters.

“We will lose thousands of jobs each year due to Measure S. This will affect many working families like my own, who need those jobs to raise families. Hundreds of thousands of residents are depending on these jobs that will not exist if Measure S passes,” said Willy Solorzano, member of Sheet Metal Workers Local 105.

Workers and apprentices voiced their concerns and agree with community leaders and organizations across Los Angeles, including Mayor Garcetti, that Measure S is bad for local jobs, wages, and our economy.

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No on S – Build Better LA is campaigning for progressive change in LA. Right now, we’re fighting to protect the jobs & affordable housing we won in November. Vote No on Measure S on March 7.