17 New York City construction workers died last year in work-related incidents. That is, if you ask the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health. According to the Department of Buildings, only 12 construction workers lost their lives on the job.
The discrepancy between these two numbers stems from conflicting definitions of a construction-related death, and it is indicative of the absence of clear, consistent data in an industry that has seen both tremendous growth and a surge in preventable deaths over the last 5 years.
The majority of the construction worker fatalities in the last year occurred on non-union sites—the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health identified 15 out of 17 deaths as non-union. However, there is disagreement as to how much of the industry is made up of non-union workers.
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