Building Trades Unions Fight to Save Apprenticeships

The following is a selection from NABTU (North America’s Building Trades Unions). Go to for more information on how apprenticeships change lives.

Today, Building Trades programs in the Registered Apprenticeship system train more men and women than anyone other than the U.S. military. This National Apprenticeship Week, NABTU reminds Congress and the Administration of the safest, most skilled and productive construction workforce that built our economy through Registered Apprenticeship, ensuring individuals from all walks of life the mastery of a craft with quality, debt-free education and a ticket to the middle class.

Hundreds of thousands of workers and businesses have made it clear: IRAP’s have no place in construction. The new Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Program (IRAP) proposal will drive down safety, training and wage standards for workers, put communities at risk and set off a race to the bottom. To safeguard communities and protect the safety, security, and future of the construction workforce, Registered Apprenticeship must be preserved, and IRAP’s must be kept out of construction.


NABTU and its signatory contractors invest over $1.6 billion annually in the highest quality training network of over 20,000 instructors in 1,600 training centers nationwide. This gold standard training through the Registered system produces the safest, best-trained, highest-quality workforce in the world to ensure the safety and integrity of America’s industry infrastructure. NABTU and our industry partners oppose any regulatory changes that could weaken the registered apprenticeship system in construction, and we oppose the implementation and certification of unproven and untested programs with lowered training and safety standards.