Non-union labor gaining ground in New York City

President of contractors’ group says competitive pricing is spurring more open shops.

July 24, 2017 |
A construction site in Manhattan

Pixabay Public Domain

Non-union labor is a growing force in New York City’s construction industry, according to an industry trade group official.

Lou Coletti, president of the Building Trade Employers' Association (BTEA), says that 95% of its construction managers and general contractors are open-shop. Coletti said competitive pricing environment favors non-union labor, though he would rather see his group be 100% union.

Coletti added that his group opposes a union-supported measure that would see public subsidies for construction worker training. He said that his members already pay for such training.

Unions continue to dominate public work in the city, by they may be losing their grip on the private sector. Some of the biggest construction companies in the city are using less union labor for their privately funded projects.

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