Westmoreland Community Action demolition firm to hire female heads of household
A new demolition company focused on hiring 40 female heads of household and others struggling with addiction could start working on projects in the next few months, said Tay Waltenbaugh, director of Westmoreland Community Action.
“We really want to work with that population, help them be employable,” he said.
The organization’s retail store, American Architectural Salvage in Mt. Pleasant, was awarded a $780,800 federal grant last year to start a demolition company. The store carries donated building materials and other home items.
With a partner in the demolition company, there will be more control over what types of items are salvaged and directed to the store before a building is torn down, store manager Kenny Czerpak said.
“That will allow us, for the first time, to be able to feed the store on our own,” Czerpak said.
That’s everything from sinks to signs and lighting fixtures to lumber from an old barn.
Also, the demolition company will be able to work on an extended time schedule to salvage materials for resale, which will bring more items into the store, said Jack Brown, store general manager and director of community services. There are specialized techniques and tools that demolition company employees can use for those jobs, he said.
“A typical house, when it’s deconstructed by hand completely, about 80 percent can be salvaged and resold,” Brown said.
Hiring of a demolition manager is under way. The team will consist of 40 employees who will work mainly in Westmoreland County.
The company will operate the same as other demolition companies, by submitting bid proposals for projects and completing the work.
Czerpak said he will work closely with the demolition manager to evaluate potential projects based on store inventory needs or popular items. Waltenbaugh said 75 percent of people hired for the team will be female heads of household, those struggling with addiction and others who might have difficulty finding jobs. The employees will be trained.
“We’re excited to get that up and running,” he said.
Anyone interested in applying can fill out an application in person at Westmoreland Community Action’s Greensburg office or online at http://westmorelandca.org/employment-2/ .
Renatta Signorini is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-837-5374, [email protected] or via Twitter @byrenatta.