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Labor and Economic Opportunity

MIOSHA and the Masonry Institute of Michigan Form Alliance to Protect Masonry and Construction Workers

Contact: LARA Communications 517-373-9280
Agency: Licensing and Regulatory Affairs

February 28, 2006 - The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) and the Masonry Institute of Michigan, Inc., signed a formal alliance on Feb. 22nd to protect the safety and health of Michigan's masonry and construction industry workers. The MIOSHA program is part of the Michigan Department of Labor & Economic Growth (DLEG).

The construction industry is one of the most hazardous industries in Michigan. Only about four percent of Michigan's workforce is employed in construction-however, construction fatalities account for nearly 50 percent of all fatal workplace accidents.


John Robovitsky, President, Masonry Institute of Michigan; and Doug Kalinowski, Director, MIOSHA Program; signed the alliance.  Also participating in the signing were several members of the Institute's Board of Trustees:  Ed Davenport, 1st Vice-President, Davenport Masonry; Larry Durkin, Treasurer, Durkin & Company Contractors; Kyle Lochonoic, Wall Bracing Committee Chairperson, Davenport Masonry; and Daniel Zechmeister, Executive Director, Masonry Institute of Michigan.


"We are proud to sign this alliance, which makes worker safety priority number one in the masonry industry," said Kalinowski.  "This proactive partnership between labor, industry and government, provides us with the unique opportunity to foster safe and healthy workplaces with Institute members."


Alliances enable organizations committed to workplace safety and health to collaborate with MIOSHA to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses. Alliances are open to all groups, including: trade or professional associations, businesses, labor organizations, educational institutions, and government agencies.


"The signing of the alliance today is a significant move for all of us in setting a standard for safety in the masonry industry.  Working together will allow for easier and quicker strides to creating a safer workplace for all," said Robovitsky.


The goals of this alliance include, but are not limited to:

  • Promote life safety as the principal goal in providing a high level of protection to masonry industry personnel and other construction employees.
  • Promote the latest Standard Practice for Bracing Masonry Walls Under Construction and Masonry Wallbracing Design Handbook published by the Mason Contractors Association of America, as an industry standard and accept it as in compliance with the MIOSHA Construction Safety Standards, Part 2. Masonry Wall Bracing.
  • Train and educate the workforce and MIOSHA on temporarily bracing masonry walls under construction safely above grade.
  • Provide assistance and expertise to the MIOSHA Construction Safety Standards Commission for updating and improving Part 2. Masonry Wall Bracing.
  • Promote dialogue between MIOSHA and the construction and masonry industry in the state of Michigan through the various masonry state associations.
  • Use various outreach tools to share safety and health information and the goals of the alliance with the mason contractors.

Since its inception in 1958, the Masonry Institute of Michigan, Inc. has been dedicated to the promotion and advancement of the masonry industry. The Institute provides information to the industry and to the public. The Institute's goal is to promote quality masonry, quality masonry units and materials, functional and efficient designs, and quality workmanship.

The objectives of the Masonry Institute of Michigan are:

  • To provide up-to-date design information to architects and structural engineers.
  • To provide technical masonry data to mason contractors, bricklayers and industry suppliers.
  • To promote the many advantages of masonry construction to the designer, the builder, the owner and the general public.
  • To promote the highest standards of quality design, quality materials and quality workmanship.
  • To promote productive working relationships between all parties of the masonry industry.

The Institute has 210 active member companies, and includes the following masonry industry members:  mason contractors, brick producers/suppliers, block producers/suppliers, cement producers, stone producers/suppliers, accessory suppliers, and associate informational members.

There are many benefits to participating in an alliance with MIOSHA. Through this program, organizations will:

  • Build trusting, cooperative relationships.
  • Network with others committed to workplace safety and health.
  • Exchange information about best practices.
  • Leverage resources to maximize worker safety and health protection.

For more information about forming an alliance or partnership with MIOSHA, please check our website at or contact the Consultation Education and Training (CET) Division at 517-322-1809.