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Press Releases

NYC Health + Hospitals and DC 9 Announce New Apprenticeship to Train Union Painters

May 26, 2022

Four-year program will provide classroom and on-the-job training

New York, NY

NYC Health + Hospitals and District Council No. 9 Local Union 1969, Civil Service Employees, International Union of Painters & Allied Trades (DC 9) today announced a new, four-year apprenticeship program to train individuals for careers as unionized painters. DC 9 will provide classroom training, and NYC Health + Hospitals will provide supervised on-the-job training. The program will develop a pipeline of candidates with the skills and experience to pass a civil service exam and qualify for unionized painter positions. In line with Mayor Adam’s Blueprint for New York City’s Economic Recovery, the Apprentice Painter program will connect New Yorkers to quality jobs and in-demand skills. Union painters earn on average a salary of $82,000 a year.

“This new apprenticeship is a special partnership between DC 9 and NYC Health + Hospitals as we look to help people break into this field and launch their careers as union painters,” said Christine Flaherty, NYC Health + Hospitals Senior Vice President for Capital Projects, Construction and Design. “Our hospitals and clinics depend on union painters to help maintain our facilities across the City. The apprenticeship will help develop a pipeline of trade healthcare heroes, and I hope this initiative brings to light the value our trade professionals have on our built environment. Painters are one of the critical and vital trade vocational career paths for young people to consider as they graduate high school and think about their futures.”

“District Council 9 is excited to partner with NYC Health + Hospitals to provide best-in-class painting and finishing to our city’s vital public health care system, while at the same time offering family-sustaining careers with pathways to the middle class for our New York City apprentices,” said Joseph Azzopardi, Business Manager/Secretary Treasurer of District Council 9. “This innovative collaboration is an exciting opportunity to invest in our local communities by providing quality jobs and improving local health facilities. DC 9 prides itself on uplifting men and women across New York City. Already, women and minorities make up 70% of our apprenticeship program, and our new partnership with NYC Health + Hospitals will allow us to grow our diversity even further, ensuring that we are connecting with the communities in which we live and work. We are proud of our union’s strong relationship with New York City, and we look forward to working more with Mayor Adams’ administration and other city agencies to continue building fruitful partnerships like this one.”

“Union apprenticeship programs pave the way to middle-class careers with benefits, providing hardworking New Yorkers both the professional and life skills needed to excel in their field,” said Gary LaBarbera, President of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York. “This innovative partnership between DC 9 and NYC Health + Hospitals will help ensure that all New Yorkers – particularly our brothers and sisters from the city’s most underserved neighborhoods – have the opportunity to build their own family-sustaining career through union direct-entry programs. The apprentices who benefit from this partnership represent the future of New York’s unionized construction industry and will most certainly do their part in maintaining our city’s hospitals and clinics as best-in-class facilities.”

Participants in the Apprentice Painter program will learn several skills, including:

  • Workplace safety
    • Use and maintenance of hand and power tools
    • Signaling, rigging, and hoisting
    • Lead and asbestos abatement
    • Ladder, scaffold, and forklift safety
    • First aid
    • Proper use of personal protective equipment
  • Trade skills
    • Reading blueprints
    • Identifying the appropriate material for various paint and surface applications
    • Types and properties of materials including paints, stains, varnishes, shellac, polyurethanes, and clear coats
    • Safely storing, disposing, and recycling trade chemicals
    • Mixing paints
    • Matching colors
    • Surface preparation
    • Wood finishing
    • Applying wallpaper
    • Preparing a workspace for interior painting (removing old paint, removing fixtures, applying mildew remover)
    • Preparing a workspace for exterior painting (removing rust, power washing and sandblasting, burning off old paint)
    • Spray painting
  • Other workplace skills
    • Estimating costs and materials
    • Review of basic arithmetic
    • Communication skills
    • Scheduling
    • Record keeping

The curriculum for the apprenticeship is set by the New York State Department of Labor. The four-year Apprentice Painter program requires a total of 6,576 hours of training, a combination of 6,000 hours of on-the-job training and 576 hours of classroom training. Graduates will need to pass the Civil Service examination for Promotion to Painter and be appointed from that list to be hired as a union painter.