As the number of skilled workers in the construction trades has plummeted in recent years, the shortage of skilled preservation craft workers has continued to grow. According to the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), 81 percent of construction firms are reporting difficulty in filling salaried and hourly craft positions in the United States.
Restoration work on historic buildings simply cannot be done without skilled workers, making the training of new craftspeople a critical priority. Additionally, job training opportunities in traditional trades continue to contribute to economic recovery and growth in America's communities.
ACHP Traditional Trades Training Task Force
The ACHP has created a Traditional Trades Training Task Force to explore how the federal government, along with non-federal partners, can promote the development of a robust workforce in the skilled preservation trades.
The Task Force’s goal is to build a preservation ethic in construction trades and highlight the worth of skilled craft workers. To that end, the Task Force will consider key issues regarding preservation trades, including credentialing, apprenticeships, and curriculum development. By exploring current opportunities and future possibilities, the group will seek to develop recommendations for federal action that could be embodied in a formal ACHP policy statement.
Traditional Trades Training Programs and Resources
While much remains to be done to increase training opportunities in the traditional trades, a number of educational programs and resources already exist.