Dear Community Friends,
You may have experienced Local 150 and the Carpenters Union picketing outside of some of our offices. This is in response to an apartment complex that Trinity is building in New Lenox to support people with disabilities. The complex will give residents a place to call their own and the support they need to live as independently as possible.
The funding for our apartment complex is from the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) and from Will County in the form of the National Housing Trust Fund, the Illinois Trust Fund and HOME funds. The funding that has been granted for this project mandates that Federal Purchase Procurement rules prevail. We are a social service agency and not a general contractor. We hired a general contractor for this project, and as a result of our funding sources, Trinity is required to procure the lowest, most qualified bidder for its contractors and follow Prevailing Wage laws.
As the project stands now, the majority of the subcontractors on the project will be union labor, as allowed by the financing restrictions. Additionally, Trinity is also complying with the mandated Section 3 of the HUD Act of 1968, requiring we make all efforts to secure minority- and women-owned business contracts and local contractors. We report these efforts regularly to HUD.
Though most subcontractors for this project use union workers, it was not fully possible to use union labor because of the funding sources and requirements outlined above. We have been in contact with the Governor’s Office and IHDA regarding this issue.
We know that many of our supporters and family members are members of local unions, including many of our employees. We have always appreciated our relationships with local unions. We believe the picketing action is a result of lack of understanding with respect to funding for this project.
Our families and program participants are excited to have increased affordable housing options. This is consistent with our mission to help people with developmental disabilities and mental illness flourish.
We disagree with the decision to picket this project, and we have done our best to reassure our program participants. Some have expressed fear that the project will cease. It’s important to keep in mind the opportunities for greater independence that this project will create for people with disabilities.
We are grateful for the community support that we have received and apologize for any inconvenience or concern the picketing may have created.
Please talk to a member of our administrative team by calling 815-485-6197 if you have any questions.
Your Friends at Trinity Services