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In Collaboration With Temple University, Unionized Laborers Break Ground On A New $22 Million Training Center In North Philadelphia

Published Thursday, January 3, 2019
by Andy Lochrie/
In Collaboration With Temple University, Unionized Laborers Break Ground On A New $22 Million Training Center In North Philadelphia

(PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA) - The Laborers’ District Council and Temple University are collaborating to bring jobs to North Philadelphia.

Spirits were high as Labor Leaders, politicians and neighborhood partners recently broke ground for the Training Center at Broad and Thompson streets.  For North Philadelphia’s aspiring Laborers, pathways to better jobs are coming closer to home - and local politicians, Building Trades Workers and university partners are cheering the opportunity.

The Laborers’ District Council of Philadelphia and Vicinity (LDC) - the only majority Black Buildings Trades Union in the city - held a jubilant groundbreaking ceremony for a $22 million, 66,000-square-foot Training and Learning Center in December.  

The three-story facility at Broad and Thompson streets, which borders Temple University’s soccer field, will provide technical training geared toward the next generation of professional Construction Craft Laborers.

The new Training Facility - The Sam Staten Jr. Laborers’ Training School, is named after Laborers’ Local 332 Business Manager, Sam Staten Jr.

Temple University will serve as an educational partner at the center to increase learning opportunities for LDC Members and the surrounding community. 

“Being just blocks away from each other presents a greater opportunity to align our workforce development efforts,” said Shirley Moy, who leads Temple's Lenfest North Philadelphia Workforce Initiative.  

Moy was excited about the center’s proximity to neighbors and the increased potential of connecting them to the Building Trades: “North Philadelphians ultimately want to get a job that pays well.  Through Temple’s Lenfest North Philadelphia Workforce Initiative, I think we can help prepare individuals for the pipeline into this career, support them through the training period and leverage our relationship with construction companies to hire them.”  

Representatives from Labor and local government underscored the importance of bringing the LDC, which until now has conducted trainings in the Suburb of Exton, into the heart of the city.

“We need this more than we need fresh air,” said Patrick Eiding, who serves as President of the Philadelphia Council AFL-CIO, which represents more than 100 Local Unions.

The LDC said that for years, many of its Members cited the difficulty of attending the Union’s Training School in Exton, which is more than an hour away from Philadelphia.

“With the school right here in the city, it will be easier for our Members to attend the classes and obtain much-needed training for future jobs in the construction industry.  Today, nothing is more vital for us as Union Members than receiving the proper, certified training for our jobs.  The new Training School will be a state-of-the-art facility designed to meet our needs for training in vital areas of construction.  Members will be able to receive their OSHA Ten and Thirty, Asbestos removal training, cut and burn, scaffold building, mason tending, air and power tools, lead abatement, and a host of other training classes designed to keep us qualified for the full range of jobs a Laborer must be able to perform in today’s competitive, construction field,” the Union said in a statement.

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