In March, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine deemed construction an essential industry, allowing construction work to continue during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Throughout most of Ohio, building trades members have the ability to keep working, if they want, as the state has deemed construction work essential. Despite a few projects being put on hold or laying off crews, most work continues.
Work in central Ohio remains strong as well.
Dorsey Hager, Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, estimates more than 90 percent of the projects within his territory remain busy.
While construction work remains busy, nearly all Local unions have cancelled their regular meetings in order to comply with the Ohio Department of Health guidelines. In most cases, union halls are closed to the public.
Some Locals are holding meetings online through video conferencing products such as Zoom to conduct essential business.
Within the C/COBCTC jurisdiction, contractors are implementing new safety guidelines derived from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, OSHA and the Ohio Department of Health’s workplace recommendations.
Thanks to these guidelines, construction is able to continue safely.
Hager urges members to stay home if they are sick.
Building trades members should not report to work if they are experiencing illness symptoms such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, runny/stuffy nose, body aches, chills or fatigue. Anyone experiencing those symptoms should seek medical attention.
Those who become sick during their work day should be separated from other employees and be sent home immediately.