IUPAT Helping Hand: Disturbing New Numbers in Suicide Rate for 15 to 24 Year Olds

As the IUPAT continues to get the word out to members and their families that resources for suicide prevention and the battle against substance use disorder are available at our new website – www.IUPAThelpinghand.com, new suicide statistics were recently reported on by AXIOS HERE and HERE.

Numbers that show the need for help is seemingly growing more and more every day. Here are some of the key statistics:

  • The suicide rate for Americans aged 15 to 24 years old — the older half of Generation Z — is the highest it’s been since at least 1999. Up by 51 percent over the last decade.
  • Suicide rates for women aged 15 to 24 have risen faster than men.




Rigmaiden: Union apprenticeships are in danger and we have to stop this fast-moving train.

Union apprenticeships are in danger and we have to stop this fast-moving train.

A message and call to action from International Union of Painters and Allied Trades General President Kenneth Rigmaiden:
In a huge bipartisan win last week, the House voted down the White House Domestic Policy Council’s desire to include the construction industry in planned pro-employer, non-union apprenticeship programs. These apprenticeships would undermine the longstanding, highly successful union-contractor apprenticeships with their own version that would cut corners and hurt workers and the public. Operatives within the Administration are pushing Congress and the White House right now to fund its Industry Recognized Apprenticeship Program, or IRAPs.
Please help us educate the Administration about the dangers of these programs by encouraging your members, employees, family and friends to sign this petition.
Like the fox watching the hen house, the Labor Department would recognize about 70 different accreditors and grant them authority to determine if a program meets a set of apprenticeship standards that the Labor Department, itself, developed, without any oversight from any state or federal department of labor.
IRAPs would not be held accountable to any state or federal department of labor. So who will hold these ABC-affiliated contractors accountable to the White House’s goal of 100,000 new apprenticeships? The fox, it seems, would be watching the hen house. The Labor Department would recognize about 70 different accreditors and grant them authority to determine if a program meets a set of apprenticeship standards that the Labor Department, itself, develops. These programs would benefit the ABC-affiliated non-union companies, who want to cut corners on costs, wages and quality.
This is a four-alarm fire that we have to extinguish.
While we wait on the DOLs release of the draft regulations, likely soon, it’s time to gear up for the fight ahead. We need as many members as possible to add their voices when the final proposed rule is issued and open for public comment in the Federal Register.
Signing the petition is only the first step in this campaign but an important one. We will update you with the latest information, provide message points and other information you may need to let the Office of Management and Budget that the construction industry should be exempt from IRAPs.
In solidarity,
Kenneth E. Rigmaiden
General President

IUPAT Apprentice Saves a Life

Orlando, FL – IUPAT Apprentice Licurgo Leal Velasquez is applauded as a good Samaritan for his quick and decisive action in saving a life.  On Friday, June 7, 2019, Edward Dahl of Deltona was driving his pickup truck near the Orlando International Airport around 7:30AM when he suffered a “blackout.”  The pickup, with Dahl inside, ended up submerged in a large retention pond.  Apprentice Licurgo Leal Velasquez witness the pickup sinking into the pond and, along with two other Samaritans, quickly entered the pond. He swam to the submerged pickup, located Dahl, who was unresponsive, and rescued him through the driver’s side window.

IUPAT apprentice Licurcgo Leal with Edward Dahl.

“I don’t remember much,” said Dahl, who was able to meet his rescuers on Tuesday. “ I’m am very grateful to everybody.  I wouldn’t be here to see them, my family, your family, without you guys” Dahl said while barely holding back tears.

SSPC Webinar Features the IUPAT and its Changing Culture of Construction Program

Changing the Culture In Construction
Thursday, May 16, 2019
2:00pm EDT

Presented by:
John Burcaw
The International Union of
Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT)


This webinar is designed to inform and empower the construction industry by separating fact from fiction and encourage our workforce to choose proactivity when it comes to behavioral health issues and addictions. Our goal is to educate individuals, in turn promoting a healthy, safe, and substance-free working environment.
Note: Registration is Free

About John Burcaw
John M. Burcaw, strategic initiatives coordinator, is responsible for developing, managing, and optimizing external relationships between the Painters and Allied Trades Labor Management Cooperation Initiative (LMCI), the International Finishing Trades Institute (IFTI), industry stakeholders, and advancing the interests of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT), its members, and affiliates. Before this position, John spent close to 12 years as an IFTI apprenticeship and training representative responsible for the coordination and implementation of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) training programs throughout the central United States.

Glazier Certification Now Available

The Architectural Glass and Metal Technician (AGMT) Certification Program has completed its final phase of development and is excited to announce it is now accepting applications for live testing.

This is an important advancement in the trade to take the quality of craftsmanship and safety to a higher level in the glazing industry, and the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades and the International Finishing Trades Institute are leading the charge for this certification for our members.

In development since early 2017, the certification program was created with the help of numerous professionals (subject matter experts) from within the glass and glazing community, including: glazing technicians & contractors, architects, engineers, general contractors, construction managers, industry consultants, manufacturers, suppliers, and professional exam developers to produce an impartial, effective test.

With the goal of minimizing installation related defects and failures within the industry, the Program provides an independent assessment of an experienced Glazier’s fundamental knowledge skills and abilities.  To become AGMT-Certified, Candidates must meet program prerequisites and pass both a knowledge-based and performance-based test.

While testing location dates and times are still being lined up, first stops are scheduled for: Philadelphia, Baltimore, and the California – Bay Area, with more locations to be scheduled in the coming months.

To allow interested glaziers across North America an opportunity to sign up for the certification, the Program will run testing in the coming months, and will begin issuing Certifications to those who qualify on an initial “sunrise” date later this year.

For more information about the program, including how to apply, fees, and study material please contact the office of your IUPAT director of training, or visit agmtprogram.com.

The iFTI launches On-the-Job Learning Tool

The International Finishing Trades Institute (iFTI) has been working with IUPAT district councils to develop the On-the-Job Learning (OJL) and Related Instruction (RI) tool, and it was successfully launched in November. It is designed to have a universal single point of entry to track apprentice hours, compare and verify members’ reported hours, provide progress reports to apprentices, and enable reporting synchronized with the iFTI LMS and IMSe system database.

The OJL project aims to simplify the apprentice reporting of hours, reduce the administrative time required of the district councils, and capture these hours for reporting purposes.

The project was developed in coordination with the LMS, IMSe, IUPAT app, our IT. The project leaders also want to give a special thanks to the members of the OJL Task Force group.

The OJL feature is now available on the IUPAT app, you can download the app at The App Store or Google Play by search IUPAT – Click here for more info.

The iFTI Creates the Path to become a Master Instructor

Quality curricula is crucial to keeping the apprentices and journey workers of the IUPAT the best of the best on the job site, but the quality of instruction is just as critical, if not more so. This is why the International Finishing Trades Institute (iFTI) has been working to take its level of instruction in the United States and Canada to an even higher level than it is now.

The inaugural Capstone Project was held in February 2019 on the IUPAT Campus in Hanover, Maryland with 8 participants.

The International Finishing Trades Institute (iFTI) Master Instructor Capstone is the final course an instructor will take prior to being recognized as an iFTI Master Instructor.  The iFTI Master Instructor Program consists of a total of ten courses. These courses include the combination of two teaching techniques courses, three health and safety courses, four additional elective courses and the Capstone Project offered by the iFTI in Hanover, MD.

The Capstone Project requires further analysis of a training topic impacting the Finishing Trades industries at an international, state/province or local level that is developed into either a research paper or a unit of study for training and education.  The strategy for completing the Capstone project includes mandatory attendance at an initial three-day seminar at the iFTI in Hanover, Maryland where instructors will convey all project guidelines and deliverables, and provide for collaboration and assistance among instructors and peers with topic selection, proposal writing, and preliminary project development.

After the initial three days, students will return home to continue the development of their topic over a period of months with periodic check-ins, conference calls, and virtual support and feedback from an IFTI advisor or team of advisors.

The Capstone project culminates in a two-day showcase of project presentations at the iFTI in Hanover MD where students will share their research and findings or share the design and development of their new course of study.  Students are evaluated on many elements of the project including demonstrated knowledge and engagement with their topic, originality and complexity of the topic, meeting project deliverables, overall participation, effort, and quality of the project materials and presentation.  The final deliverable is a Capstone Project reflection paper that will allow the student to take a final look and reflect upon their successes, failures, plans for improvement and the overall project development and implementation process.

The inaugural Capstone Project was held in February 2019 with 8 participants. Eligibility for participation in the Capstone course is based on completion of the iFTI Master Instructor course requirements.

The iFTI is excited about this new opportunity for our member instructors that will enhance their skills and knowledge and deliver a standard of quality and integrity in our training and education programs as a Master Instructor.

Labor and Management Offer a New Kind of “Apprenticeship”

Traditionally, when you think of an apprenticeship in the Finishing Trades, the work is done in training centers across North America, and with on the job training. Now, thanks to IUPAT labor and management working together, there’s a new kind of “apprenticeship” available to IUPAT members – in estimating.

Estimating Essentials is a course offered to IUPAT contractors who want to introduce a recent company hire, an up and coming journey worker or a foremen whose skills they want to develop to broaden their career opportunities in construction and estimating, as well as give the company another trained estimator.

Estimating Essentials is bringing a new kind of apprenticeship to the IUPAT and its industry partners.

This two-day educational course for the apprentice estimator and a mentor covers all the steps to effectively develop a winning bid. It includes classroom and hands-on estimating practice, from document review through quantity takeoff and the calculation of all direct and indirect costs, concluding with the total price bid.

Topics include:

  • Contracts and other bid documents
  • Quantity takeoff
  • Direct costs
  • Indirect costs, contingencies and overhead
  • Common errors made and how to avoid them
  • Practice estimates
  • Internet resources and tools

Classes are currently being held different areas across North America and well received by the students. Students are asked to make comments in a review, and the feedback has been very promising for the class to continue to develop and succeed.

“I believe this course should be offered to every new signatory company that has new estimators.”

“The class was the best construction training class.”

“This was a great class. I have only been estimating for three years, and this class showed me that I am doing things correctly and on the right track to succeed.”

Visit www.LMCIonline.org under programs to learn more about Estimating Essentials and the other programs your labor and management leaders are creating for union members and the companies they work for.

IUPAT Labor and Management Investing in a Competitive Edge

A strong labor-management partnership in the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades always strives to create and foster and a competitive edge in the industry for IUPAT union companies and labor. A crucial part of that competitive edge for the IUPAT and its industry partners has always been training. Apprentices in the IUPAT are offered the best in training and education in the Finishing Trades through the IUPAT Finishing Trades Institute, but that training doesn’t stop with apprenticeship, it goes well beyond into the careers of our journey workers as well.

An example of labor and management working together to accomplish the above goals is our investment in the Architectural Glass and Metal Technician (AGMT) certification. The IUPAT is working with other industry leaders and manufacturers and the Architectural Glass and Metal Certification Council to create this American National Standards Institute (ANSI) accredited glazier certification. This third party accreditation by ANSI ensures that testing for the certification remains neutral in the industry.

IUPAT labor and management have been working together to invest and execute the AGMT glazier certification with other industry leaders, including manufacturers, to take the glazing industry to the next level in installation and safety.

“However,” added FTI Director Anton Ruesing. “Our glazing apprenticeship program and our journey worker training definitely give our members a significant advantage when it comes to the certification testing, because our training programs are so advanced.”

The certification test covers glazing theory, quality control, tools of the trade, construction documents and layout, sealants and gaskets, systems and water management. The physical test focuses on proper methods of installing curtainwall, storefront and sealants. Safety skills are also part of the testing.

Beta testing for the AGMT certification has been taking place throughout the United States, including at IUPAT training centers, and our glaziers have a more than 80 percent rate of passing. A great start in taking the industry to the next level. It is going to be an important year for IUPAT glaziers as this certification becomes more widely available in 2019.

Union Sportsmen’s Alliance Names UAW, IUPAT and IUE-CWA Conservation Stewards of the Year

Spring Hill, Tenn. — The Union Sportsmen’s Alliance (USA) is proud to announce the recipients of the organization’s prestigious 2018 Conservation Steward of the Year Awards for the United Auto Workers (UAW), International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) and Industrial Division of the Communications Workers of America (IUE-CWA).

IUPAT Business Manager Robert Gilmore.

UAW member Steve Cochran, IUPAT member Robert Gilmore and IUE-CWA member Jeanette Mauk were selected to receive the award on behalf of their unions for exemplary commitment to conservation and community service.

The award recognizes volunteers from each of the USA’s charter unions who have made exceptional contributions to the USA’s efforts to organize union volunteers to donate their time and unique trade skills in the preservation of North America’s outdoor heritage.
Cochran, of Ooltewah, Tennessee, is president of UAW Local 42 and has spearheaded the local’s USA Conservation Dinner fundraiser the past two years. Cochran also led a major overhaul of the Wolftever Creek Boat Ramp on Lake Chickamauga just outside of Chattanooga, in which union volunteers donated labor and $10,000 raised at the dinner to replace a dilapidated dock with a brand-new, 104-foot-long, handicap-accessible floating pier.
“It’s an honor to receive this award and represent the entire UAW as we collectively give back to conservation and our communities,” said Cochran. “We are driven to take on projects that benefit everyone and strengthen the connection between union workers and their neighbors.”
Gilmore, of Dawson, Iowa, is a member of IUPAT Local 246 and serves as business manager and secretary-treasurer of District Council 81. He has led USA fundraising dinners in Des Moines since 2015, raising more than $500,000 in the process and organized conservation projects in the area including the large-scale restoration of a handicap-accessible fishing pier and fishing house at Lake Ahquabi State Park, and construction of a large public shelter at Fort Des Moines State Park. Gilmore also launched an annual shooting event for local union members which benefits USA conservation efforts.
Along with this year’s conservation dinner and shoot, he is planning a public shelter/log cabin project at Yellow Banks County Park and a Get Youth Outdoors event for 2019.
“I am extremely honored to be considered for this award,” said Gilmore. “The success of our local efforts is due to a great group of building trades members working together, and reflects the commitment union members have to giving back to their community. The Union Sportsmen’s Alliance makes it easy for us to join forces for the greater cause of conservation, youth outreach and promoting outdoor recreation.”
Mauk, of Dayton, Ohio, serves as the state’s AFL-CIO Field Director. She is a vested member of the IUE-CWA, which is a USA charter union, and is also a member of the Office and Professional Employees International Union Local 98. Mauk has shepherded and grown the USA’s Ohio State Conservation Dinner in Columbus for seven years. She has also organized multiple projects including the installation of a new public fishing pier at Dayton’s Lakeside Lake and Ohio’s first Take Kid’s Fishing Day in Marietta. She is currently planning a youth fishing event to be held in Dayton this May.
“This is awesome,” Mauk said of receiving the award. “It means a lot. But the real rewards of being involved in the labor movement and working with the USA include giving back to our communities, fostering solidarity among union members and building bridges between unions and the public. When you see what can be accomplished when everyone pulls together, it just makes you want to do more.”
“Steve, Robert and Jeanette are dedicated volunteers whose leadership and fundraising efforts help us execute impactful conservation projects and safeguard the future of our outdoor traditions in their local communities and across the country,” said USA CEO and Executive Director Scott Vance.
The Conservation Steward of the Year selection process begins with the nomination of potential recipients by peers or union leadership. From this pool of nominees, USA staff select individuals who have had the greatest impact on the USA’s mission, represented their unions in the most exemplary fashion and made the biggest difference in their local community.
Previous USA Conservation Steward of the Year Award recipients include: Brent Beasley and Mark Conroy, United Union of Roofers, Waterproofers and Allied Workers; Dave Branson and Michael Cramer, United Association; Josh Craig, International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers; George Hogan, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers; and Anthony Nicholson, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators.