INSTALL's John McGrath, ANSI Installation Standards and Unionization

Discussion in 'Industry News, Training & Organizations' started by Barry Carlton, Mar 28, 2010.

  1. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    This 2 part interview was brought to my attention today. It is about 22 minutes total in 2 approx. 10 minute segments.

    It is the first I have heard from any other sources than installers and rumors.

    Any thoughts? I have a couple.

    Part I
    TalkFloor TV

    Part II
    TalkFloor TV
  2. rusty baker

    rusty baker Well-Known Member

    I got the impression that they think all installers should be union. And he said no other organizations had the capabilities to train installers? Am i wrong? That is sure what it sounded like to me. They wil have a real problem in right-to-work states, where you can't be forced to be union. And he said it wouldn't cost installers. What about dues?
  3. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    That was my first thought too. How can the mills warrant their product in a state (like mine) where there is no union support or activity? How could I possibly get training and certification. And INSTALL is mostly back east with the carpenter's and out west we are supposedly with the painter's....assuming there is representation and support.

    And if I do not pay is still all free???
  4. rusty baker

    rusty baker Well-Known Member

    I would like to hear someone CFI certified chime in. Or certified by any other organization. Apparently, Install thinks your certs wouldn't count. What about vinyl, lino, wood and ceramic installers? Will the new standards cover them?
  5. Isabella Flooring

    Isabella Flooring Pro Member

    I want to Thank Barry for posting....

    I encourage EVERY installer, Business Owner, Employee, to veiw the Interveiw with Mr. John Mcgarth with INSTALL. I myself contacted Mr. John Mcgarth (spelling of name could be off) And asked him for a Invite to their Las Vegas Seminar, and was pretty much put off. I even told him I a Consensus Body member on another re-write with the IICRC.

    If you like the UNIONS and PAYING DUES, and being dictated too, the S-600 is for you, The S-600 can be written but not as a ANSI spec. It's either/or.

    Once it is written with an ANSI spec, it has to go for public veiw, this is where we/you can be heard, it will delay the process for awhile, Trust me, Its money making for UNIONS/Teamster's. It will be a hefty cost to an Installer that wants to get a cert.
  6. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    "They" are the United Brotherhood of Carpenters rusty. Obviously their $200 million INSTALL budget is designed to establish a system of training, certification and enforcement of standards that would be advantageous to the union members. He admits the Brotherhood is a long way off from controlling the industry. It's a GOAL to organize everyone working in our trade. Isn't it ironic that they (carpenters)would put this training center outside their jurisdiction? (Vegas is IBPAT territory)

    There's no mention anywhere of forcing anyone to be in a union. There's also no laws preventing unions from organizing EXCLUSIVE training programs and participating in establishing standards that would raise the quality of installation for the entire industry. We've got one thing the rest of the scattered flooring contractors and training associations will probably never have; money and power.
  7. Isabella Flooring

    Isabella Flooring Pro Member

    I beleve that Mr. Jim Walker of CFI is a Consensus Body member on the S-600
  8. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    This is a free market competitive idea. The mills are free to participate in this program or not. Contractors and customers have the final say. No one can force a customer to buy carpet, wood or vinyl if they don't want it. Your options as a non-union installer would be to join the union or compete with union trained and mill certified installers. Conceptually, this is a CONSUMER driven program with the goal to educate the large buyers of flooring on the need to have real professionals in the installation business as opposed to what's out there today.

    There are today and always will be some organization out there offering training and certification. It will be up to them and yourself to work out with the mills, general contractors and customers to what extent they will honor and participate through warranty those competing programs.
  9. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    As I have stated before I am not anti union. This does concern me though in the way that I understand it.
    If the Exclusive training and support is only available through the unions, and if the mills choose to sign on to the policy of only providing warranties from approved training bodies (i.e. union) where does that leave me and the others in my state and others that through no fault of their own are in a 'right to work' state?
    Is training and certifications going to be provided at a reasonable rate, or because they are trying to be exclusive to their own, are the training rates going to be exorbitant? If available at all?
    One such as myself who cannot join will be penalized as will our customers, retailers, and others in the flooring industries is several states.
    Is the money and power enough to get these states to change their laws, and if so, how far reaching will it be? What other industries will be affected by this large strong arm?

    Again I am wondering out loud. I do think the unions have a place.....just not everywhere and in everything. I think they can and should have the strength and muscle to protect and support those who want it.

    And in my case, as I have found out, if I wanted it I cannot get it.

    And those who do not want the support or protection should not feel forced or coerced into it.
  10. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    Another thing I noticed was the references to the cleaners and how it benefited their industry as a whole. Is this really the case? I genuinely do not know.
    Does the average consumer benefit from the mills stand on warranties and proper cleaning and care? Has it raised the cleaners standards, pay, quality, professionalism, etc.? Again I am asking, I do not know.
    Has it benefited the mills, retailers, etc.?

    Maybe another thread? I only mentioned this due to the several references in the interview. And that it would provide the same supposed benefits and security as it has provided the cleaners>
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2010
  11. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    Just another thought......when the union is so involved as the interview implies, emotions and opinions run high. We want to be able to discuss the ANSI progress or lack of without it becoming political. I know it is difficult, but this topic will not go away soon and will be a source of discussion here and on other forums.

    Let's keep this one friendly.

    Like Momma always said....if you can't say something nice......
  12. Isabella Flooring

    Isabella Flooring Pro Member

    Here is a thought,

    ABC Installer or store calls for a Inspection,

    Inspector ask's if Abc Installer/store is S-600 Certified, Inspector finds out no certified Installer was on the job,

    Will the claim be denied due to no S-600 Certifacation was on the Job,

    Most Mills are Consensus Body members on this writting of the S-600, and I am sure theirs alot of TELEPROMPTERS along side of some.......
  13. rusty baker

    rusty baker Well-Known Member

    I would think that would be illegal. I would think a mill could be sued.
  14. Isabella Flooring

    Isabella Flooring Pro Member


    Can't sue if it is stated in their installation guidelines, and it has already been proposed by the mills on the re-write of there installation procedures.....

    Dont get me wrong, I am for as much certifacation out there, But at what cost???????

    As I said, Shaw, Mohawk, beaulieu Carpet Mills are Consensus Body Members......

    I would like to ask all of you to go to Install Read their web-site and ask/write Mr. John McGrathe jr. for an Invite to there Floor covering Conference, This April to see what they are about, Like I said earlier, I asked for an Invite and received a COLD shoulder, My feelling to the COLD shoulder is not a good way to promote yourself or Organization.
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2010
  15. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Administwative Asst. Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    As always with something new, there are a million questions to be asked and answers formulated. So with this process, the standards have not even been written yet, we have questions but I am sure there are NO answers yet, since the standards are not written.

    Will it be something difficult to work through? You betcha!! That is one of the reasons that there has never been enforcable standards up till this time. I hope I live long enough to see these standards put into place and the proper training arranged and given.

    I will make this comment, with plumbers and electricians it took the State and local governments getting involved to get enforcable standards. I don't see that happening to the flooring business. It is not something that affects the life of a majority of folks.

    The key here is if the mills get involved and tie their warranty to the training. Now, I don't even know if that would be legal in every state! I do know that in some states you cannot demand the use of factory parts or factory certified mechanics to keep a factory warranty on an automobile. I would assume the same type of standard may apply to certification of flooring mechanics.

    Yes this will be an ongoing issue for MANY years to come. I did kind of chuckle at Mr. McGrath (who I have respect for) and how he had to dance around the issue of the union members paying for their training with deductions from hourly wages.
  16. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Administwative Asst. Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    By the way, I sent an e-mail to Mr Mullins over a year ago volunteering to be on the committee or to do any leg work needed. I got a short "Thanks, I'll send your name on to the right people." That was the last I heard from him. Maybe if my name started with L Mig or Chris C., Oh well!!;)
  17. Isabella Flooring

    Isabella Flooring Pro Member


    You would be surprized how far they are on the S-600, I would say by this time next year, If no-one complains when it goes for PUBLIC reveiw, It will be written, This was disscussed at the re-write of R-800 meeting in March 9th-10 this year, in Atlanta.
  18. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    I'm actually shocked that people here feel threatened by the Carpenter unions attempts to promote itself and improve the general quality of installation standards.

    This effort would take 5-10 years to have ANY impact on the large commercial segment of the industry. That's where the mills selling to higher end customers could offer a more secure warranty on their higher grade material for what would be a nominal extra cost in the installation by restricting the jobs to certified shops. Those shops, having less competiton would obviously charge a premium--------this is nothing new. The customers who want the low end crap installed for nothing aren't going to DEMAND union workers, certified installers or even legal residents or citizen workers. It's preposterous. They don't CARE about the warranty, face it.

    Personally, I don't think it will EVER have any impact on the residential sector. There's too much competition and too little real difference in quality between one carpet manufacturer and the next. Installers and shops who sell quality goods and do quality work still have to live and die by the economy and the degree of competition.
  19. rusty baker

    rusty baker Well-Known Member

    Brian, I belonged to a union for 4 years, not floorcovering, and it was an experience I would not want to repeat. But, I'm too old. This business will be in my rearview mirror, long before it would affect me.
  20. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    I just come here to talk about my trade and learn from other guys who actually do things similar to what I do. I'm not here to promote or defend unions rusty. That's really ALWAYS 100% politics. But if people want to discuss our COLLECTIVE interests, BARGAINING for higher pay, ORGANIZING in our mutual interests, TRAINING to be better professionals, EDUCATION and CERTIFICATION for journeyman those discussions are also 100% political.

    Someone will have to explain to me how it could possibly be otherwise.
    Don't bother. It can't.

    I'd just as soon stick to talking about our technical and practical expertise and experience. We'll still get all riled up about that stuff too------but not quite so deep down to the core like discussions of politics------which is inseparable from religion------seems to lead to.

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