ABC Keystone Merit Shop Advocacy Blog

The Merit Shop Advocacy Update

By: David G. Greineder, IOM, ABC Pennsylvania Director of Government Affairs

Recognizing Your Membership this Labor Day

This weekend will be the 140th time America will celebrate Labor Day. While we mark the long weekend as the “unofficial end of summer,” the day was created to recognize the work, contributions, and achievements of American labor, particularly the trades. As an association consisting of the trades and businesses affiliated with the construction industry, we want to say THANK YOU for your contributions to this great nation and for helping to train the next generation of tradespeople.

This weekend also brings to light just how critical our industry is to meet the country’s needs. There is a tremendous urgency to repair and replace infrastructure. There is a shortage of affordable housing. Buildings need to be built. Machines need to be repaired and maintained. There is no doubt workers experienced in the trades will always be in high demand. However, according to the National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER), nearly 40 percent of the construction workforce will be retired by 2030, and there are not enough workers entering the field to replace them. If the nation cannot recruit young people, or re-train middle aged workers, there will be major issues with completing projects on time and under budget.

Our passionate members have done a great job educating elected officials on the outdated and discriminatory barriers to training more people. We are doing our part, but if government would modernize the rules, we could do so much more. Our members are no-nonsense and bottom-line people, so when it takes decades to change a rule, there is frustration peppered with a lot of cynicism at the political system. But our members also have a tremendous sense of resolve and will keep up the good fight for as long as it takes.

No matter what happens in November, ABC will not back down from protecting your businesses and advocating for modernizing government regulations. In 2023, a new gubernatorial administration will be inaugurated along with the start of a new two-year legislative session. This will be a prime opportunity to tell your local elected officials – the people representing you and your business – we need them to do the politically uncomfortable thing and lead. While we can’t control the timing of when our political leaders have the will to make the changes we need, we can control how we communicate and educate them on how much our industry changes people’s lives.

As we officially end the summer, let us look ahead with a firm resolve and positive attitude about the future. 

If you have any questions about legislation or ABC’s positions on an issues, please contact David Greineder, IOM, at davidg@abcpa.org.


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Posted August 30, 2022