Associated Builders and Contractors Sue to Block Rule That Helps Returning Veterans Seek Careers In Construction

Published: December 5, 2013

ABCWASTEThe Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) has filed an injunction to prevent the implementation of a new rule by the U.S. Department of Labor that would encourage the hiring of disabled Americans and military veterans, calling it “wasteful and burdensome.”

It is worth noting that the ABC has operated as nothing more than a right-wing ideological, anti-union organization that does not represent the voice of the construction industry and does not engage in any activities designed to promote or enhance the industry.  In fact, the ABC represents less than 1% of all construction contractors in the United States.  A significant part of the group’s membership consists of non-construction business and organizations such as flower boutiques, car dealerships, law firms, and barbecue shacks.

The ABC’s primary reason for being has been, and continues to be, to neutralize and limit the scope of the unionized construction industry and ensure that the lowest common denominator of a company’s baseline profit, and nothing else, is used as the standard throughout the industry.

While the unionized construction industry invests over $1 billion a year in skilled craft workforce development; the ABC shuns such investments.  And that is why they have been actively and aggressively seeking a new and expanded foreign guest worker program in the US Congress – so its members can continue to have ready access to a low-wage, and easily exploitable workforce.

And where the unionized construction industry is proactive in working to create structured pathways for disadvantaged Americans (women, minority workers, military veterans, etc.) to secure quality career training and skills development opportunities in the construction industry, the ABC criticizes and actually devotes significant resources to oppose such efforts.

Lobbying and then suing to block a program that helps veterans build meaningful careers when they return home may be the new low, even for an organization such as this one.


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