The Alabama AGC is making a concerted effort to reach out to the Hispanic community to attract skilled craftsmen to the commercial construction industry.
Part of this plan is to produce a quarterly bilingual publication called El Constructor AGC. El Constructor AGC will extol the virtues of working in the commercial construction industry for AGC members. It is part of a plan to brand the AGC and its members with this vital workforce. The program also includes brochures in Spanish and English which will be distributed throughout the Hispanic community statewide as well as in all high schools.
As part of the overall program, the Alabama AGC will provide Spanish-speaking help for the Latino workers. These craftsmen will be invited to the AGC offices where they will be offered a free OSHA 10-hour safety course in Spanish, a skills assessment, a drug test and a picture ID stating their affiliation with the Alabama AGC and trade and skill level. The Alabama AGC then will help find employment for the group among AGC members.
“The board authorized in July the creation of a new designation called Alabama AGC Craftworker Affiliate,” said Bill Caton, Alabama AGC’s director of public relations and marketing. “This designation will be open to anyone and we intend to recruit heavily from graduating high school students. Of course, we will be recruiting among the Latino community as well. We don’t want to leave anyone out.”
Caton said the program is part of an overall plan to help solve workforce problems as mandated by the Strategic Plan.
“We are focusing on bilingual publications because we don’t want to ignore a large percentage of our potential workforce,” Caton said. “National AGC President Harry Mashburn has said that nationally the construction industry will need 300,000 workers each year and about 40 percent of all new workers in the industry are Latino.
“The Alabama AGC already has developed bilingual recruiting materials and has joined forces with KPI Latino, a Latino marketing group,” he said. “All the elements of the recruiting campaign should be in place before the end of this year.”