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BILD Supports Government Decision to Deem Construction Sites an “Essential Workplace” as a Necessary Balance Between Protecting Health and Safety of Workers and Delivering Necessary Housing
Today’s announcement by the Provincial Government that deems construction sites as “essential workplaces” is vital to balance the health and safety of workers and the housing needs of Ontarians. With families waiting to close on new properties, sales of existing homes, and countless other logistical details associated with buying and selling a property it is essential to keep the industry working.
“The health and safety of employees, suppliers and customers is the industry’s top concern,” said David Wilkes President and CEO of BILD. “The industry has taken proactive steps such as reducing staff to a bare minimum, practicing social distancing for inside work, prioritizing outside work where trades are not in close proximity with each other and increasing on-site sanitation and sanitation facilities.”
Buying a home is not like other transactions and for new home owners can involve the sale of an existing home, legal transactions and moving logistics. It is simply not feasible to delay the completion of homes near closing without a significant effect throughout the GTA. In addition, with housing supply already at crisis levels, stopping construction will create long term implications to housing supply in the future.
“As the Premier stated yesterday, Ontario workers have the right to refuse unsafe worksites and should report these conditions to the appropriate authorities. Many BILD members have adopted policies to close down work sites if someone is feeling unwell,” added Wilkes.
The COVID-19 situation is rapidly evolving and the Building Industry and Land Development Association will continue to follow the guidance of Public Health officials, municipalities, the province and of course the Federal Government.