IKO is a proud supporter of Hispanic Heritage Month, which has been officially recognized in the U.S. for the past 30 years, during September 15th through October 15th.
NORTH AMERICA (September 15, 2018 – October 15, 2018) – Hispanic Heritage Month is a celebration of Hispanics, the culture, and the many contributions to our society, past and present; acknowledging and highlighting the achievements of outstanding Latinos across the gamut, including sciences, economy and the arts.
At IKO, we proudly recognize the contributions of Hispanics to the construction and building trades industries. And in particular, the roofing industry where more than half, 54.4 percent of the roofing workforce identifies as Hispanic or Latino (IHS Economics, 2015 Research Study). Latinos impact every level of the industry, from laborers, crew leaders, and contractors to those who develop and manufacture innovative techniques and products. We see these trends influencing homeownership as well, with an estimated 47 percent of new mortgages being attributed to Latinos, per a 2017 National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals Report.
This dramatic demographic growth is evident across the spectrum and proving vital to the fabric of America. As of the 2012 U.S. Census, there were 57 million Latinos in the U.S., comprising 56 percent of the population growth, with this segment becoming a minority-majority by 2043. Also, playing an increasingly significant role in the future of U.S. employment growth, accounting for more than 75 percent between 2020 and 2034 – an increase of 11 million jobs out of an economy-wide gain of 14 million –according to a study from IHS Inc. Additionally, the latest U.S. Community Survey reports that 27 percent of Hispanic workers were employed as construction laborers in 2007 vs. 16 percent of non-Hispanic workers.
Recent studies, including the 2015 Hispanics in Roofing: Special Industry Report by the Roofing Industry Alliance for Progress, analyzed the growing Latino presence in roofing. Emphasizing the increased need to support Latinos in the industry and facilitate collaboration and engagement between Latinos and non-Latinos. Priorities include providing Spanish language resources and training for contractors, including safety, business acumen, and product support, along with personal and professional leadership development opportunities. Also, addressing the gap in technical assistance and capacity building for emerging Latino entrepreneurs, currently opening businesses at 15 times the national average.
As an international leader and innovator in the roofing industry for over 60 years, IKO continues to be a trendsetter by empowering Latinos to continue to be an integral part of our industry. IKO offers Spanish language product information on its website, along with a very robust library of resources, demonstrations, and support tools. As a matter of fact, our Spanish language Installation Guides are some of the most viewed videos on our YouTube channel.
“IKO roofing shingles and accessories, such as underlayment, wind, ice and water protector and other components of the ShieldPRO plus+™ roofing system have earned a well-deserved reputation for quality. Homeowners and contractors alike have come to ask for IKO by name,” states Brand Director, North America, Jeff Williams, and our Latino community is certainly part of this mix.
Furthermore, IKO is hosting a number of educational live regional events to provide value-added support to contractors, distributors and local partners. Local contractors from the Chicago area are invited to the IKO Sales Booster Training scheduled for November 29, 2018. Fully committed to supporting the Latino contractor, all contents will be made accessible to Spanish-speaking participants, through pre-translated materials and simultaneous interpretation. IKO acknowledges the significant contributions of Latinos to our U.S. economy and workforce, not only during this commemorative period but year around.
IKO is a worldwide leader in the roofing, waterproofing and insulation industry for residential and commercial markets. A family-owned business established in 1951, IKO remains firmly rooted in its founding values of craftsmanship and innovation to provide best-in-class products, services and value. Committed to a high level of vertical integration, the company also maintains its founder’s belief of the importance of controlling the raw materials used in its manufacturing process. IKO operates more than 25 manufacturing plants throughout North America and Europe. For more information on IKO and its full line of roofing product solutions, visit www.iko.com.
Lauren Long, Eckel & Vaughan
Greyson Kane, Eckel & Vaughan
Derek Fee, IKO