New Program Announced for Union Painters in NYC


Late last month, public health care system NYC Health + Hospitals and District Council No. 9 Local Union 1969, Civil Service Employees, International Union of Painters & Allied Trades (DC 9) announced a new, four-year apprenticeship program to train individuals for careers as unionized painters.

“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.”

About the Program

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.

“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.”

Throughout the four years of trianing, 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; and
  • Proper use of personal protective equipment.

Apprentices will also learn various trade skills, such as how to read blueprints; identifying the appropriate material for various paint and surface applications; methods of surface preparation; how to prepare a workspace for interior painting (removing old paint, removing fixtures, applying mildew remover); and how to prepare a workspace for exterior painting (removing rust, power washing and sandblasting, burning off old paint).

In addition, participants in the program will learn about the types and properties of materials including paints, stains, varnishes, shellac, polyurethanes and clear coats; how to safely store, dispose of and recycle trade chemicals; how to mix paints; how to match colors; proper wood finishing and wallpaper application; and spray painting.

Other workplace skills outlined in the curriculum include estimating costs and materials, basic arithmetic, communication, scheduling and record keeping.

According to NYC Health + Hospitals, the curriculum for the apprenticeship was set by the New York State Department of Labor. 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.

“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.”

Other DC 9 News

The Association of Master Painters and Decorators of New York, Inc. recently issued a special scholarship notice through its painting industry promotion fund.

Posted by the District Council 9 of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, the notice outlined that any member of Local Unions 18, 19, 20, 24, 113, 490, 806, 1087, 1456 and 1486 who has a son or daughter graduating from high school this semester, has maintained at least a B average and will attend an accredited four-year university, was eligible.

The notice added that the applicant’s parent must be a member in good standing with the Union for a minimum of three years.

If interested in applying, applicants were asked to provide the following information:

  • Name, address and telephone number of applicant;
  • Parent’s local union number;
  • Parent’s social security number; and
  • Parent’s present employer (company name).

Applications are to be emailed or mailed to all qualified applicants by the Association of Master Painters and Decorators of New York, Inc. Promotion Fund office. Mail or email all requests with the above information to: Painting Industry Scholarship Fund, 370 Seventh Avenue, Suite 418, New York, NY 10001 or

The deadline to submit an application is July 31.


Tagged categories: Coatings education; Education; Good Technical Practice; International Union of Painters and Allied Trades; NA; North America; Painters; Painting Contractors; Program/Project Management; Unions; Worker training; Workers

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