Commitment to Action

Investment and Training for American Infrastructure

Commitment by


In 2011, The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) committed to encourage both workers' capital and skilled labor to contribute to large-scale investments in the reconstruction of America's built environment. To achieve this goal, the AFL-CIO and its partners implemented a three part effort. First, the AFL-CIO supported efforts by a wide range of money managers, asset consultants, pension funds, developers, and federal, state and local governments to finance the construction and repair of quality public infrastructure. The AFL-CIO believes these efforts will result in at least $10 billion in workers' capital invested in this area within five years. Second, in the short term, the AFL-CIO worked with existing real estate-focused investment funds, to invest between $10 and $20 million of additional capital in energy efficient retrofits of commercial, industrial, institutional and public buildings. To directly stand behind this proposition, the AFL-CIO issued a Request for Proposals, soliciting bids from private sector partners to conduct an energy efficiency retrofit on its own headquarters using union labor. Third, the AFL-CIO supported the AFL-CIO Building and Construction Trades Department and its affiliated unions and contractors in their efforts to train 40,000 new apprentices in the next year in building construction and infrastructure related skills-in particular training leading to third party certification in technologies in high projected demand, including for example, specialty welding and new green technologies required in 21st century infrastructure, industrial, commercial and residential construction. In addition, over the past year, this effort provided skills upgrades and certifications to 100,000 mid-career construction workers.





Investment and Training for American Infrastructure



Est. Duration

5 years

Estimated Total Value



Northern America


United States

Commitment by


Partner(s) of the Commitment Maker(s)

New York City Employee Retirement System (NYCERS), Union Labor Life Insurance Company, AFL-CIO Building Investment Trust (BIT), Western Conference of Teamsters Pension Fund, Illinois State University Retirement System, North America's Building Trades Unions, AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust, California State Teachers Retirement, ULLICO Inc., California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS), Oregon Public Employee Funds, American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, New York City Teachers Retirement System (NYCTRS), American Federation of Teachers