New York, NY – Construction is hard, dangerous work. Imagine also doing that work and not knowing if you have the right safety equipment, what happens if you get hurt, or even how much you are going to get paid to do the work.
For temporary construction workers, who are often immigrants or individuals reentering the workforce, this has been their reality. There has long been little transparency in the work they might be assigned, how much they will make for that work, what their rights are, and even what training is needed for the job. Instead, these workers face mistreatment and fear retaliation for reporting abuse…all while risking their lives to have a job.
But now, construction labor providers, also known as body shops or temp agencies, must be licensed by my agency, the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP), and provide employees with a notice of rights, a certification notice that details any required trainings or certifications, and a notice of assignment with wages and benefits—in a language the worker understands. These rights apply regardless of immigration status and criminal history.
DCWP is ensuring the businesses employing these workers are licensed, inform us of their business operations, maintain records, and provide their workers with information about their rights and responsibilities, which will increase transparency and safety in the industry.
Workers can visit nyc.gov/workers or call 311 for more information or to file a complaint. Businesses can learn more about the licensing requirements and regulations at nyc.gov/BusinessToolbox or by calling 311.
Vilda Vera Mayuga is the Commissioner for the NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection. Learn more about DCWP’s Office of Labor Policy & Standards—NYC’s central resource for workers—at nyc.gov/workers.