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Compliance on construction sites operation

The interior finishing sector in the CCQ's sights this fall

November 16, 2016

Throughout November and up to December 10, the Commission de la construction du Québec (CCQ) will have an increased presence on construction sites where interior finishing work is being done. This operation will target, specifically, painting, plastering, including joint pointing, and installation of drywall panels.

“In 2015, our inspectors observed infractions during more than a third of their visits to sites where there was painting and plastering work underway,” noted Jean-Guy Gagnon, the CCQ’s vice-president of operations. “This is almost three times higher than the industry average. We regularly see the same stratagems in the sector. Among other things, many workers are paid ‘by the square foot’ and not by the hour, as provided in the collective agreements. There are also contractors who ask their employees to temporarily create a company in order to subcontract the work to them and save on labour costs.”

This higher non-compliance rate is explained to a large extent by the nature of the activities, which are more likely to be paid by the contract, the short duration that such work lasts, and the fact that the sites concerned often are not visible from outside the building. “To improve the current situation in this sector, it is important to be able to count on the cooperation of people on sites to blow the whistle on those who don’t respect the rules,” Gagnon emphasized.

During this period, the CCQ will make the main actors, including the industry’s employer and union associations, aware of the importance of reporting any non-compliant situation. The organization plans to meet with 1,200 workers and 1,200 employers working in the sector concerned, or 12% more of the people involved than during the same period in 2015.

As we remember, this operation is the second one of its type to be conducted by the CCQ this year. Indeed, the increased presence on civil engineering and roadwork sites this summer caused the non-compliance rate in that sector to fall by one third.