Demolition can be a very dangerous and complicated business – unless you know what you are doing! The folks at International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 18 (“Local 18”) know what they are doing.
Local 18 is dedicated to training future apprentices and journeymen in the operation of heavy equipment. Its Trust Fund helps pay the students during their training. Students receive classroom training on equipment operation, OSHA compliance, safety and technical skills.
“You know Local 18 is dedicated to training when they have gone above and beyond to create a Trust Fund, own their demolition equipment, and have invested in a facility for hands-on training,” said Gus Frangos, President of the Cuyahoga Land Bank.
Frangos and Local 18 created a partnership where students could get on-the-job training on the Cuyahoga Land Bank’s demolition sites while supervised by expert Local 18 heavy equipment operators.
“This was a perfect opportunity for our students to get live demolition experience on the Cuyahoga Land Bank’s demolition sites,” said Richard Dalton, Local 18 Business Manager. “We look forward to our continued partnership with the Cuyahoga Land Bank,” he added.
The Cuyahoga Land Bank will compensate Local 18 for the demolition work to help it continue its program, maintain equipment and serve more students. The Cuyahoga Land Bank will, in turn, expend less for each demolition performed by Local 18.
Cheryl Stephens, Director of Acquisitions, Development and Disposition at the Cuyahoga Land Bank crafted the details of the program and identified a 12-suite condemned and abandoned apartment at East 105th and Lee Avenue as the first demolition site.
Students will all be from Cuyahoga County with an emphasis on urban and minority communities.
Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish has strongly advocated for quality workforce programs. “Our administration has worked on numerous community development projects with the Cuyahoga Land Bank, and this is one of the strategies that we strongly support,” said Budish. Cuyahoga County Councilman Pernell Jones has also worked with the Cuyahoga Land Bank to initiate and create small business development in the neighborhoods. “It is great to see our Cuyahoga Land Bank work with Local 18 in a way that supports our citizens and our community values,” said Jones.