Much Has Changed in the Construction Industry Over the Past 100 Years... ...Except for New York State’s Scaffold Law Pass S.111/A.3104
Reform the Scaffold Law! Safety, Jobs, EquitySafety First• New York’s Scaffold Law was enacted in 1885 because of the inherent dangers associated with construction work.• The outdated Scaffold Law predates the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Workers Compensation Law, state regulations, local laws, and construction industry best practices that provide rigorous safety protections to workers.• Unlike any other law in New York or the Nation, the Scaffold Law places an absolute civil liability on contractors, and property owners for elevation related injuries and often results in large cash awards to the plaintiff.More Middle-Class Jobs• New York State agencies and authorities spend $12 billion annually on infrastructure creating thousands of middle-class jobs and supporting our economy.• Unecessary insurance costs caused by the Scaffold Law for the New York City School Construction Authority, Freedom Tower in lower Manhattan, new Tappan Zee Bridge, State University of New York and other government funded infrastructure projects add hundreds of millions to projects.• The Scaffold Law contributes to double-digit construction industry unemployment and drives up costs on every construction project for state and local governments; school districts; homeowners; not-for-profits; businesses; and contractors.Fairness• The absolute liability standard and threat of large cash awards to plaintiffs has a disproportionate impact on M/WBE contractors and not-for-profit organizations because many insurance companies refuse to provide general liability policies.• Scaffold Law reform does not take away workers rights; rather it would improve safety, create middle-class jobs, and provide equity for all.• Scaffold Law reform simply adds a comparative negligence standard, which is available in all other cases of civil liability in New York State.• Scaffold Law reform would only apply to a criminal act, use of drugs or alcohol, failure of the employee to use safety devices furnished at the job site, failure to comply with employer instructions regarding the use of safety devices at the job site, or failure of the employee to comply with safe work practices Pass the Gallivan/Morelle Scaffold Law reform bill. (S.111/A.3104)
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