City pushes to keep day laborers safe on the job

EAST TREMONT - City and federal officials passed out safety cards Thursday at an East Tremont site where day laborers gather.

Department of Buildings representatives met some of the laborers outside a White Castle on Westchester and East Tremont avenues. The safety cards, which are also in Spanish, provide information about how to correctly use safety harnesses on job sites.

The push is the result of a string of scaffolding accidents in 2006, some of them deadly.

"The Bronx is experiencing a lot of construction," says Guillermo Linares, of the mayor's Office of Immigrant Affairs. "A lot of workers are coming to work here and we want to make sure they're safe."

Officials attribute a 50 percent drop in scaffolding-related accidents last year to their ongoing awareness efforts.

A worker, who wished to remain anonymous, told News 12 The Bronx that safety issues stem from illegal workers being so desperate for work that they'll forgo safety for a paycheck.

According to some estimates, thousands of day laborers are in the New York City metropolitan area.

Related information:NYC Department of Buildings

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