For years, nonunion labor brokers in the New York City construction industry have targeted workers who have recently been released from prison and are under parole supervision or other court surveillance programs, in a move that many say ensures low wages and poses a serious safety risk for employees.
Known as “body shops”, these labor brokers hire and pay workers to perform work for third party companies, profiting by taking a cut of the wages paid by the company. The labor brokers end up competing in a race to drive down labor costs through wage suppression and cutting corners on training and safety.
Former prisoners are usually required to look for work as a condition of their release, so they may be willing to take any job they can get to avoid being returned to jail on a parole violation. It’s not an idle threat: New York imprisoned individuals nearly three times the national average in 2019 for technical parole violations, consisting of 40% of all individuals admitted to prisons in the state.Body shop employers exploit those work requirements to pay parolees’ low wages under unsafe working conditions.
Terrible, just terrible.
Now read the story properly:
while union members in the New York City construction industry start at more than $28 an hour plus benefits.
“Now that I’m in the union, I don’t have to do anything negative to make a dollar,” added Coley. “It’s changed my life dramatically in a positive way and not only financially, but being able to help other individuals in their next step in life.”
This is a planted – OK, PR’d = story to make the union look good.