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Habitat, labor unions launch ‘Labor With Habitat Week’

Habitat for Humanity International, labor unions launch ‘Labor with Habitat Week’

WASHINGTON, April 6, 2004 — Habitat for Humanity International will launch Labor with Habitat Week, a weeklong celebration, May 16-22, to recognize its national partnership with the Building and Construction Trades Department-AFL-CIO and its 15 affiliated trade unions.

The unions represent more than three million trades men and women nationwide, and the kickoff is May 17, in Cincinnati. The two organizations inked an agreement in April 2003 to work together to help address the lack of affordable housing for low-income families. HFHI and the building trades will help foster relationships between Habitat for Humanity affiliates and local trades unions.

Specifically, the partnership will encourage:

• resource sharing between Habitat for Humanity affiliates and building trades unions

• contributions by trades union members in the areas of professional services, building materials and tools to affiliates

• trades union sponsorship of Habitat house construction

• utilizing Habitat build sites as “living laboratories” where union apprentices can learn trades

• training of designated skills to Habitat volunteers on construction sites

• involving trades union members with Habitat for Humanity affiliate as crew leaders, committee members and community volunteers.

“This partnership provides Habitat for Humanity and the labor unions with an opportunity to significantly impact this country’s housing crisis,” says Millard Fuller, founder and president, Habitat for Humanity International. “We are all very excited about the prospect of sharing resources, skills and knowledge for the purpose of building affordable housing with those who need it most.”

During Labor with Habitat Week, carpenters, electricians, painters, bricklayers and other construction trades union members will join Habitat for Humanity affiliates around the nation to work on Habitat houses in their communities.

Edward C. Sullivan, president of the building trades, said, “This year the building trades are focused on defending the American Dream for workers across the nation. Providing shelter for your family and homeownership are vital parts of the American Dream. Union tradesmen and women are proud to assist Habitat for Humanity to make that dream come true for people in need.”

Sullivan plans to be in Cincinnati to volunteer his building skills to the effort and encourages all of his union brothers and sisters in the trades to do the same in their own communities. Among the 15 unions represented by the Building Trades Department are boilermakers, bricklayers, carpenters, electrical workers, elevator constructors, heat and frost insulators, iron workers, laborers, operating engineers, painters and allied trades, plasterers and cement masons, plumbers and pipe fitters, roofers, sheet metal workers, and teamsters.

About the Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO
The Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO, coordinates activity and provides resources to 15 affiliated trades unions in the construction industry. It has 386 state, local and provincial councils in the United States and Canada. Created in 1908, the BCTD has helped its 15 affiliated building trades unions to make job sites safer, deliver apprenticeship and journey-level training, organize new workers, support legislation that affects working families, and assist in securing improved wages, hours and working conditions through collective bargaining.

About Habitat for Humanity International
Habitat for Humanity International is a Christian ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing. Founded by Millard Fuller, along with his wife, Linda, Habitat for Humanity International and its affiliates in more than 3,000 communities in 92 nations have built and sold more than 150,000 homes to partner families with no-profit, zero-interest mortgages.