Construction Industry Tradesmen – Need to Retire Earlier

Need to retire early? Not in the construction industry! I wrote this article a couple of years ago after the last space cadet announcement from the government about retiring at 67. Construction Industry tradesmen – Need to retire earlier. Now the government deem it acceptable for us to retire at 70 – yes you read that right – 70 years old.

“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.” – Carl Segan

While other governments in the  EU are dropping the age – the space cadets that run this country are trying to kill off anyone who works in the construction industry – talk about trying to keep the manual workforce in its place. Its like going back to Victorian times.

The government seem determined to make the construction industry tradesmen work until they drop or better still, until we end up in a wooden box. People in the UK on average work a lot more hours than our European counterparts in general, but this Conservative Government want us to work even harder. Construction industry tradesmen need to retire early.

Why are the construction industry companies not fighting for our rights. What company wants 1000’s of 70 yr old men and woman hobbling around a construction site. If everyone was employed in the industry and these companies had to pay all the time off for people associated with the medical problems people of this age group, they would be shouting from the roof tops.

Because most of us are self-employed and have to lose money if we are off sick – they could not give a damn! This may sound like an un-educated rant, but believe me, life on a construction site is bloody hard work.

Does anyone ever consider the physical efforts involved in a particular industry?

Work hard and you get respect. Work hard and you get 2 homes and a car with heated seats. Work extra hard and spend half your life working with people you don`t like, never see your children, never see the wife, but earn loads of money they can spend. Work hard in a construction trade and all you will achieve is a Bad back, Tennis elbow, Hearing Loss and if you are really lucky… a Knee replacement. Now the government is trying to make construction workers spend even more time at work. Only God himself will know what joys in retirement constructions workers will have, that`s if they ever get to that age.

Construction Industry Tradesmen – Bricklayers

Let`s look at one particular trade and try to work out the actual stress that will be put on the human body in the course of their natural working life. It`s difficult to work out exactly, so let’s do some calculations that may just help people realise the effects such hard work will have on the “Old Bones”.

• Concrete Blocks: 34, 000 tonnes per working life
• Mortar: 10,000 tonnes per working life
• Concrete Lintels: 1000 tonnes per working life
• Shovels of sand: 800,000 per working life
• Trowels full of mortar: Millions

Construction Industry Tradesmen – Need to Retire Earlier

The reality

Now this is a very broad estimate and would not be the same for everyone, but do politicians think all construction workers sit in a nice warm office, always have access to hot food, access to clean toilet facilities and drive a car that is fuelled by tax payer`s money.
The reality is totally different on a construction site. Work in very adverse weather conditions for 7 months of the year, no hot food, very bad toilet facilities that quite often don`t even have hot water and a car that thrives on being filled up with overpriced fuel that they can little afford. People often have either of the following 2 philosophies:

Live to work

Get up at 05.30 o`clock, shower, breakfast and merrily go to work. They come home from work at 7 o`clock in the evening with a sense of satisfaction from their achievements and have a sense that it was all worth it. For some it would be the huge salaries often achieved in certain industries, for others it`s the power over people they think or know they have.

Work to Live

For this work ethic people view work as a bind that must be done in order to earn a living. Quite often these people want the maximum return for the least effort, others have great skills, huge commitment to their job, but they don`t let work rule their life`s.
Construction workers in general, seem to have a third philosophy……

Work to die

Now this ethic is one of get up at 05.30, no breakfast, no shower and on average £10 spent on fuel
just getting to work. Work hard all day with absolutely no interest in the job. Get treated in most cases like a third class citizen with little or no respect from managers that will never gain respect from anyone. This philosophy will make people think, why on earth anyone wants to work on a construction site, but like most things in life “needs must”
How many industries do you know where on average when you reach the age of retirement, your body will be totally and utterly “KNACKERED”

Roll on my 67th! Will I be able to blow out the candles?