Prompt firings, denunciations follow job site stripper incident in Milton, Ont.
By On-Site StaffHealth & Safety Labour
Several Ontario construction workers have been fired after a video surfaced last week of what Mattamy Homes called an extremely inappropriate event at one of the homebuilder’s projects in Milton, Ont.
The footage, obtained by CBC News, depicts several men watching and touching a woman as she dances in an under construction home, CBC first reported April 15.
Mattamy said the incident, which occurred April 9, involved an employee of one of its trade partners and several others from the trade firm’s subcontractors. The builder denounced the incident and noted it has severed ties with all involved.
The Residential Construction Council of Ontario (RESCON) called the incident appalling.
“This type of activity is shameful, abhorrent and demeaning to women,” said Amina Dibe, manager of government and stakeholder relations at RESCON, in a release. “We are trying to attract more women and youth to the industry and an action like this only serves as a deterrent. It is unacceptable behaviour and only reinforces the stereotype of construction being a male-dominated and misogynistic industry.”
Dibe added the industry has made “great progress” at making construction more welcoming to women, but this incident shows “we must do better.”
Mattamy released few details about the Toronto area incident, but said it will be reminding its partners about its workplace policies and COVID-19 protocols, as well as reviewing its security procedures.
No one in the video was wearing a mask, CBC noted.
“These disgusting and inappropriate actions are also an afront to every health and safety professional, the medical community, and broader construction industry which has made sacrifices and worked tirelessly over the past year to comply with COVID-19 protocols, regulations and best practices,” said Andrew Pariser, RESCON vice-president and chair of the residential building organization’s health and safety committee.
“The construction industry as a whole demands and expects better,” he added in a release. “These actions are clear breaches of the Occupational Safety and Health Act and violate the culture of safety that the construction industry strives to create, maintain and promote.”
–With files from the Canadian Press
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