HISTORY

LiUNA represents members across North America with a long history that originally started in 1836 when the first recognized Laborers' Union was established in Philadelphia. Hundreds of Laborers' Local Unions existed across North America at the turn of the century but they were only admitted to the early AFL as "Federal Locals." But in 1903, Samuel Gompers, President of the American Federation of Labor (AFL), sent out a convention call to independent local Laborers’ Unions, urging them to join together and establish an international union of construction laborers.

On April 13, the International Hod Carriers and Building Laborers’ Union (IHC and BLC) was founded. The first convention, held in Washington, D.C., was attended by 25 delegates from 23 Local Unions in 17 cities, representing 8,186 Laborers. A Declaration of Principles was adopted during the first convention. The delegates elected Herman Lilien, a Belgian immigrant from Chicago Local Union 4, as General President and he served as General President until 1905.

Fast forward a 182 years later, our International Union now encompasses Locals in every Province in Canada and throughout the U.S. lobbying for worker related issues to be addressed at every level of government. We continually to work collectively with employees, our existing members and employers to raise the standards for workers on the job. Although we have a strong history built on the foundation of solidarity and hard-work, we know that the conditions we have achieved for workers can be stripped away. 

"Where trade unions are most firmly organized, there are the rights of the people most respected." - Samuel Gompers

Resources:
LiUNA’s History
Local 1611 Building The Power History Book

 

Links

Coronavirus Preparation and Response Fact Sheet - Updated March 20, 2020

The Laborers' Health and Safety Fund of North America has developed a fact sheet in response to several questions about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). CLICK here for the Coronavirus FACT SHEET. Last updated March 20, 2020

Coronavirus & COVID-19: Preparation and Response

First known as the novel coronavirus, the virus now referred to as COVID-19 has been declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the number of cases in the U.S. and Canada continues to rise. It’s now critical that everyone does their part to limit the spread of the virus, as people without symptoms or with mild symptoms can still spread the virus to others.

Risk in the U.S. and Canada

Current risk of contracting COVID-19 in the U.S. and Canada varies by community based on the extent of the outbreak and the success of mitigation efforts. About half the people diagnosed with COVID-19 have already recovered. It’s estimated over 80 percent of those infected will experience only mild symptoms.

However, even people at low risk for serious health complications should take steps to protect groups who would be at higher risk if they got the virus.

Risk for more serious health effects is highest among:

Older adults (age 60 and up)
People with underlying health conditions (e.g., heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, cancer)
People with weakened immune systems
The majority of deaths caused by COVID-19 have occurred among people falling into at least one of these higher risk categories.

Transmission & Diagnosis

Transmission: spread primarily through airborne respiratory droplets during coughing and sneezing, but can also be spread through regular breathing. Being in close proximity (less than six feet) to an infected person, especially in enclosed spaces, can result in transmission. Close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands, or touching an object with the virus on it, followed by touching your mouth, nose or eyes before washing your hands can spread the virus.

Diagnosis: If you suspect you have COVID-19, call your healthcare provider. A lab test may be performed and sent to the CDC.