At the 2021 International Roofing Expo, Roofing & Exteriors Chief Editor Rachel Williams interviewed Trent Cotney, CEO of Cotney Attorneys & Consultants.
At the show, Cotney was a featured speaker, leading two sessions: "Legal Issues in a Post COVID-19 World: Panel Discussion" and "Top 5 Immigration Issues in Roofing."
According to recent statistics, more than 1.5 million immigrants are currently working in the U.S. construction industry.
The biggest issue, in Cotney's view, is that immigration policy is being dictated by politicians.
"One of the things that I've seen consistently is that there's a misconception in our industry," Cotney said, in that it's seen as "a roofer or someone that has a pickup truck and hires illegals.
"That's not the case," he emphasized. "We want the ability to make sure that we have a pathway to get legal immigrants into our workforce."