Construction sector demands including its workers in aid
The works are halted in compliance with social isolation.
The construction sector organized in the Dominican Chamber of Construction (Cadocon) and the Association of Home Builders and Promoters (Acoprovi) demanded that the Government include more than 300,000 workers in the sector in the state aid and subsidy programs adopted as part of measures to deal with the impact of the coronavirus on the country’s workers.
Both entities request to be received by the high-level commission on economy and employment in order to seek solutions for construction workers, who they say are not being considered in the measures indicated so far.
“We value the Government’s effort for the aid delivery solutions and subsidies that it has arranged for a part of the population, in the face of the state of Emergency against the COVID-19 pandemic that our nation is experiencing. However, the proposed mechanisms do not include more than 300,000 mobile workers nationwide, who are being left out of the aid measures,” they indicated in a statement.
They explain that construction is the fastest growing product sector in the national economy, with 10.5% of gross domestic product (GDP), and contributed 19% of growth at the end of 2019.
The construction industry needs government support and recognition to be able to survive this crisis due to its essential impact on the economy and because it is a vital sector for the reactivation of economic dynamics once this is overcome, say the Caadocon and Acoprovi.
“It is imperative that mechanisms be created that can be applied effectively,” they indicate.
They recall that, given the seriousness of the situation, the first thing they did was to call its members to suspend their operations before the government-mandated the cessation.
In addition, in order not to create propagation points, they have been recommended to stay in their homes and have disseminated and oriented their collaborators and members to adopt sanitary measures to protect health against COVID-19.
However, they specify that if these measures are not accompanied by subsidies from the State, they will become unsustainable and they will not be able to continue the process of social distancing and isolation for a sector whose labor force live from work day by day in the different construction projects and whose work they have not been able to carry out in the current circumstances.
Recently, the Government, through the Ministry of Finance, announced the expansion of social assistance programs by delivering food and non-carbonated beverages for a monthly value of RD $ 5,000 in two biweekly items of RD $ 2,500 each.
In addition, the Employee Assistance Fund (FASE) was put into effect, through which it supports the worker with a monthly subsidy of RD $ 4,500 to RD $ 8,500 per month. Cadocon and Acoprovi indicated their willingness to help and to make the process as traumatic as possible.