VICTORIA — As BC Construction and Skilled Trades Month comes to a close, the event’s organizers have announced this year’s picks to receive leadership awards.
“Congratulations to these deserving winners for their achievements in protecting the construction workforce,” said Chris Atchison, president of the BC Construction Association, which sponsored the awards with LNG Canada. “These awards showcase just a few of the thousands of individuals that kept our industry going through the pandemic, workers who understand the importance of both mental and physical safety and have acted under extreme pressure with integrity and professionalism.”
The winners are:
Cori Coutts and field staff — Knappett Projects (Victoria)
Coutts is the safety manager at Knappett Projects Inc., overseeing the field team’s creation, implementation, and maintenance of safe jobsites during the pandemic. To date, Knappett has had no COVID-19 cases on its sites. As Kathy Price, administrator at Knappett, put it, “For the first time in history, Knappett’s field staff were essential workers, and they were proud of it.”
The BC Construction Association stated Coutts and the Knappett team bought into new procedures immediately, streamlining and documenting as they went, and diligently maintaining and promoting the practices to all trades onsite, even building hot water wash stations that will remain in place well after COVID.
Matthew Goffinet — Kinetic Construction (Surrey)
Goffinet was nominated by Mark Liudzius, executive vice-president and director of operations at Kinetic Construction, who stated Goffinet has shown exemplary leadership during the pandemic. Liudzius added that Goffinet’s attention to global pandemic information, provincial guidelines, local outbreaks and community concerns made it possible to swiftly roll out clear instructions and ensure workforce safety without creating further anxiety.
Shayna Helal — Mott Electric (Burnaby)
Helal had only just stepped into her new role as chief safety officer at Mott Electric when she was tasked with managing the challenges of COVID-19.
Her nominator, Mott vice-prresident Ellisha Mott, praised Helal for her work in overseeing the implementation of protocols that were changing almost daily, keeping Mott’s large high residential and industrial projects open during the entire lockdown and pandemic experience. Helal supported the entire field staff, led the unique challenge of creating safe office reopening plans, and proactively submitted their plan to WorkSafeBC prior to formal guidance being published.
Mathew Kinney — Turner Construction Company (Vancouver)
Kinney was in charge constructing a new power plant within the existing Lions Gate Hospital when the pandemic hit. The hospital was tasked with caring for all the COVID patients in the area. According to his nominator Alistair McIntyre, health and safety manager at Turner Construction Company, Kinney co-ordinated with the hospital’s infection control experts to keep his workers, hospital staff and patients safe. Kinney worked to introduce signage, safety protocols, screening protocols, disinfecting, room occupancy limits and one-way systems. His model became the template for other Turner sites.