Environmental Remediation Training Facility Provides Classes and Certifications to Keep Work Local

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Environmental Remediation Training Facility Provides Classes and Certifications to Keep Work Local

A New York contractor training facility is finding local employment opportunities for individuals in the environmental remediation business. Cornerstone Training Institute (CTI) is working with local businesses and agencies to train and develop a local workforce to handle all aspects of asbestos removal for the Midtown Plaza demolition in Rochester, New York.

Rochester, NY June 16, 2009 – The mammoth 34.1 million dollar project of removing asbestos from a plaza in the center of a city is providing an opportunity to create jobs and train a new workforce willing to get the job done in central and western New York.

The shortage of local workers for the project prodded Darren Yehl, Owner of Cornerstone Training Institute, to contact county and city officials about stimulating the economy with a locally trained workforce. CTI was a key component in the fast-paced removal and demolition of the Kodak Footprint Reduction project. “Unfortunately, there are normally never enough local certified men and women to take on big remediation projects like these,” said Mr. Yehl. “We need to train a workforce right here so we can provide these jobs to our own community.”

Mr. Yehl initially contacted County Executive Maggie Brooks about the need for locally trained employees for the project. The discussion was the catalyst to a connection with Judy Seil in the Planning and Development office. It then moved forward with support from Economic Development Commissioner Carlos Carballada and Dennis Mullen from the Upstate Empire State Development Corporation. With the momentum increasing, a meeting with Mayor Duffy led to a constructive conversation with Keenan Allen from the Employment Opportunities Office about providing OSHA and asbestos certifications.

The project is underway and CTI has set an ambitious goal to train and certify 400 men and women to prepare for the wave of remediation projects in central and western New York, including the Midtown Plaza demolition. They are offering English and Spanish courses in asbestos, OSHA, lead, and other hazardous materials removal.

A number of groups have signed on to provide staff for the upcoming projects. Quality Labor Resources has built a network of over 200 laborers, the Local 832 has certified 80 equipment operators, and Pathstone has trained and certified several of its members. The Catholic Family Center and the Safety Council of western and central New York has dedicated grant money for training local workers.

“We are receiving cooperation from all these groups. However, we are fighting an uphill battle for most people that are on their own and cannot afford the ($525) training. Because the work isn't there yet, and there is no guaranteed job placement at this time, Rochester Works grant programs are tough to come by,” said Yehl. “As a result, we’ve created special funding options for qualifying individuals to get their NYS asbestos certification.”

About Cornerstone Training Institute
Cornerstone Training Institute is New York State’s most qualified Environmental Safety Firm with a proven history of minimizing risk while maximizing worksite efficiencies and cost savings. Cornerstone has built its foundation on lasting client partnerships.

Darren Yehl, Cornerstone Training Institute, 585-267-9479
Email: dyehl@ctienvironmental.com

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