'The only way in which we can fight this is by coming together and taking a stand against anti-Black racism'
After seeing an increase in racist and discriminatory threats, several construction-related groups have teamed up to launch a “Built for Respect” campaign to tackle and fight anti-Black racism within the construction industry.
Tridel, Ellis Don, the Labourers’ International Union of North America, Local 183, Residential Construction Council of Ontario (RESCON) and the Building Industry & Land Development Association (BILD) have come together for the project.
“Built for Respect is not only necessary right now but an impactful way for the sector to come together and address an ongoing issue. We have seen over the past few months an increase in racist and discriminatory threats against members of this community, and the only way in which we can fight this is by coming together and taking a stand against anti-Black racism within our city. This campaign will do just that and I look forward to supporting it,” said Toronto Mayor John Tory.
In June, the Residential Construction Council of Ontario (RESCON) called on police to conduct a full investigation of “racist hate crimes” after several nooses were discovered in construction sites in the province.
With Built for Respect, Tridel is looking to provide clarity on what is expected and what will not be tolerated “to ensure every workplace remains equitable and inclusive for everyone.”
“Providing the appropriate training and education in support of anti-racism is a major milestone in raising awareness that racist acts are not typically in isolation, and that systemic racism exists within the field of construction.”
In September, RESCON launched a Construction Against Racism Everywhere (CARE) campaign to bring employers, unions and government together to combat and address racism in the industry.