EAGLE MOUNTAIN, Utah, March 21, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — Meta and Mortensen Construction, the company building Meta’s multi-million dollar data center in Eagle Mountain, have shut down construction for the day after a noose was found at the job site.
“Meta has zero tolerance for any racist acts,” says a statement Meta — until recently known as Facebook — sent to Gephardt Daily. Meta continues using the Facebook name during the brand-name transition.
“While this is a challenge facing the entire industry, we’re working with our general contractors to implement measures that will help prevent them at any of our construction sites.
“At the Eagle Mountain site, we are working closely with Mortenson and trade leaders to identify the perpetrator(s) of these acts.”
This is not the first time Mortenson, building the multi-building complex at the Sweetwater Industrial Park, has closed down construction. The project temporarily closed down in November of last year when racist graffiti was found scrawled in a portable bathroom at the site.
“Mortenson’s priority is the safety and welfare of our team members and everyone on our projects. We are responding to and investigating a noose found on the ground at the Eagle Mountain project site,” said a statement issued Monday by the company.
“We strongly condemn and have zero tolerance for hate, racism or bigotry in any form, and we have a clear anti-harassment, anti-discrimination policy.
“We stopped work on the project for today to immediately and directly address this matter with all team members and project partners, and to ensure the wellbeing of our workforce. We are working with local authorities and a private investigator to identify those responsible and prosecute them to the full extent of the law. There is a $100,000 reward for information leading to the identification of the individual(s) responsible.”
Mortenson’s statement says racism is against its core values.
“We empathize with the many men and women working on this project whose values are not represented by what has occurred. Mortenson is committed to creating and upholding a culture of inclusion, fostering a diverse workforce, and to maintaining an environment where safety, dignity, and respect for everyone on our project is paramount.”
Meta said it follows an established protocol at all its facility sites.
“We are working tirelessly with our general contractors to combat these events on our sites,” its statement says, adding that all contractors must compy with:
- Developing a playbook on how to respond to these instances immediately and effectively.
- Launching a diversity and inclusion campaign on all of our U.S. data center construction sites.
- Required all data center general contractors to include the Responsible Business Alliance Code of Conduct in the Master Construction Agreement. This requires general contractors to communicate Code requirements to subcontractors and to monitor their compliance with the Code. These requirements include a workforce free of harassment and unlawful discrimination.
- Implemented a zero tolerance policy with all of our general contractors. As part of this protocol, general contractors take action when an incident is reported.
- Every new employee/worker on site receives training to address behavior expectations.
- Our general contractors have implemented anonymous reporting channels at all our construction sites.
Gephardt Daily will have more information as this story develops.