Statement of New York State AFL-CIO President Mario Cilento on importance of the Scaffold Safety Law in response to Speaker Johnson’s misguided MTA reform plan

Manhattan - It is deeply disappointing that New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson seems to be unaware of the importance of the Scaffold Safety Law as it relates to the safety, health and well-being of working men and women.

For the most part, Speaker Johnson has demonstrated an understanding of the priorities of working men and women. Unfortunately, his misguided MTA reform plan has been seized upon by anti-labor, anti-worker groups motivated by profits at the expense of worker safety.

It is no surprise that this report, which relies on research that has already been discredited, is now being used by some to weaken worker protections. Therefore, it is imperative to remind everyone that the Scaffold Safety Law is a statewide issue that impacts workers from Buffalo to Brooklyn to Long Island and everywhere in between. It is a vital worker protection that is intended to stop preventable workplace injury and death merely by requiring contractors and project owners to ensure necessary safety equipment is provided and utilized.

We look forward to working with all involved, including the Speaker, to ensure everyone is fully educated on the Scaffold Safety Law. Making sure working men and women return home safely at the end of the workday is a priority that I’m confident we all share.


The New York State AFL-CIO is a federation of 3,000 unions, representing 2.5 million members, retirees and their families with one goal; to raise the standard of living and quality of life of all working people. We keep New York State Union Strong by fighting for better wages, better benefits and better working conditions. For more information on the Labor Movement in New York, visit