WORKPLACE SAFETY – On Thursday, June 1st, the Brazilian Worker Center hosted the signing of a memorandum with new safety regulations for construction workers in Boston. The ceremony was attended by Mayor Michelle Wu, who visited the BWC for the first time along with her team. The memorandum, approved by the Boston City Council, contains new rules that require construction and demolition projects to have detailed safety plans and reinforce inspections to prevent accidents.
In recent years, Boston has experienced several accidents in the construction industry. For example, in 2021, the construction fatality rate was two and a half times the national average.
Key points of the new memorandum:
From now on, large construction projects are required to have detailed safety plans in order to obtain a construction permit.
Contractors and builders must submit safety plans as part of the construction permit application for any building over 50,000 square feet, and for demolition projects in buildings with four or more stories.
The memorandum also mandates that the construction site have a safety coordinator trained by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration).
Builders must also provide safety orientations to new workers and hold pre-shift meetings to explain potential risks during the work.
The rules were developed in collaboration with construction unions, worker advocates such as the Brazilian Worker Center, construction companies, and OSHA.
Among the guests present at the memorandum signing was Jim Mulligan, Area Director of OSHA.