As union carpenters, we understand the importance of training, from reaching our full potential as crafts workers to making sure we're as safe and whole going home as we were arriving at the job. For members of the Boston Fire Department, training is even more important. Day in and day out, they're working to save the lives and property of the people of Boston. That’s why Boston Firefighters Local 718 recently enlisted the help of the New England Carpenter Training Fund for our latest “Helping Hammers” endeavor.As part of their supervised training, union carpenter apprentices built a structure to be used in Rapid Intervention and Thermal Imaging Rescue training. It was built at the Boston Fire Training Academy on Moon Island in Quincy, MA, and will be invaluable to their ongoing firefighting and lifesaving training programs.
This past summer, apprentices with the New England Carpenters Training Fund (
NECTF) completed work on a unique project on Peddocks Island, one of the largest islands in Boston Harbor. Over a hundred apprentices traveled to the island over the course of a year for onsite hands-on training restoring the Peddocks Island Chapel.
Considered one of the most historic of the thirty-four Boston Harbor Islands, Peddocks has the longest shoreline of any of the islands and a very diverse landscape making it very attractive to visitors. With many of the island’s buildings in severe disrepair, the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) implemented a plan to preserve the island’s history while keeping it safe for visitors. One of the most significant projects was the restoration of the most iconic feature of the island: the chapel located near the island’s main dock.
The scope of work needing to be done at the chapel was daunting, and the Boston Harbor Island Alliance reached out to the New England Regional Council of Carpenters and the NECTF asking for help with labor on the $1.8 million chapel restoration project.
The island experience offered a unique work opportunity for apprentices. While being taught general work conditions and site safety, apprentices also learned the logistics of planning to work in an isolated environment and how to adapt and adjust accordingly.
NERCC produced this documentary video of the work the apprentices completed at the chapel, including footage from various stages of the project and interviews with some of the people involved.
The New England Regional Council of Carpenters and the New England Carpenters Training Fund teamed up with Boston Cares, the region’s largest volunteer mobilizer, to help them with their campaign to build 500 beds for children in need in 2014.
Instructors from the NECTF helped complete the design for the toddler beds so that they can be easily assembled by volunteers with minimal training. In advance of each volunteer day, member apprentices mill the lumber and prep all of the stock. Corporate and individual volunteers then assemble the beds at various locations, including the Carpenters Center and New England Carpenters Training Center.
According to the Mass. Coalition for the Homeless, more than 1,500 Greater Boston school children do not have a bed, which affects their self-esteem, ability to learn, and likelihood of graduating from high school. Boston Cares works with social workers at several non-profit partners to find homes for each bed.
Volunteers assemble beds at the New England Carpenter Training Center.
Union signatory contractor Allegheny Contract Flooring has produced a video promoting its new concrete finishing system. The “Supercap” system allows for time and cost savings for work on new or existing concrete slabs. The system also takes advantage of Greenguard certified, low alkali technology to contribute toward LEED status.
Members of Floorcoverers Local 2168 are working with Allegheny and the Supercap system to improve quality and sustainability while shortening construction schedules and saving projects money.
Click here or on the image, above, to watch the video on Alleheny's website.
May Day, also known as International Workers’ Day, commemorates the 1886 Haymarket Massacre in Chicago. Four demonstrators and several police officers were killed during a general strike for the eight-hour workday when an unidentified person threw a bomb at police who were trying to disperse the gathering of people. Police reacted to by firing at the crowd of workers. Today, International Workers’ Day is celebrated in more than 80 countries around the world as a day to commemorate the ongoing fight for workers’ rights.
Boston-area gatherings will be held this afternoon in Revere, Everett, Chelsea and at Boston City Hall (start times vary by location). Participants will march from each of these locations to a combined rally at 5:00 PM happening at Liberty Plaza, Central Square, which is located off of Bennington and Meridian Streets in East Boston.
NERCC, with help from local community groups, created this video as a promotion for local area International Workers’ Day events. The piece gives Boston-area workers, including Piledrivers Local 56 member Fran Kotak, a chance to share their stories. Check out the full length version of this video here.
United States Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren visited the Carpenters Center recently to speak with members about issues of specific interest to union carpenters. She took questions from members and spoke individually with members before and after the event. Thank you to Elizabeth Warren for coming by and thank you to every member who cared enough to come out and get involved.
The New England Carpenters Labor-Management Program is proud to provide an interesting look at the work of union contractors and carpenters at the Old Colony Housing Project in South Boston. The time lapse video, synchronized to music was shot over the course of a year, during the project's first phase. Suffolk Construction was the Construction Manager.
Union carpenters employed by Suffolk Construction and numerous subcontractors were proud to recently complete Phase One of the redevelopment of housing at Old Colony in South Boston. The project involved demolition of old buildings and construction of 116 energy efficient affordable apartment units as well as a 10,000 square-foot community center and other improvements and amenities. As the largest property managed by the Boston Housing Authority, demolition and construction was completed on a 15 acre occupied site containing 850 housing units. The project changes the face of a community and the lives of many who will live there.
Video of the three buildings in this piece was gathered over the course of a year, from December 2010 through December 2011 during almost weekly visits. Videographer Ellen Webber of the New England Carpenters Labor Management Program produced the piece.
The following video story about Local 40 Brother Ricardo Engermann, an apprentice who's helping pave the way for future carpenters was recently posted in the Meet Our Community section of nercc.org. Take a look to see more stories on the "Meet Our Community" page.