Giuliani 'Thanks' Builders at IBS

Giuliani 'Thanks' Builders at IBS

Speaking at the Grand Opening ceremonies for the 58th annual International Builders Show (IBS) at the Georgia World Congress Center here, Giuliani thanked home builders for helping victims of the World Trade Center disaster by donating millions of dollars through the Home Builders Care Victims' Relief Fund.

"You should be proud of what you've done," Giuliani said.

According to the National Association of Home Builders, the sponsor of the IBS, the Home Builders Care Victims' Relief Fund has distributed more than $4.1 million to charitable groups that provide direct assistance to victims of the attacks. To date, more than $9.5 million has been collected by the NAHB through its philanthropic arm, the National Housing Endowment, association officials said.

Saluting the role that the nation's home builders play in the American way of life, Giuliani told a standing-room-only audience of more than 15,000, "You are a very important part of why we have freedom. The idea of owning your own homes comes out of the respect for human rights that we have. When you are building a home, you are building America.

"We are going to go ahead with our lives because we are people who live in freedom," he said. "American home builders can help us a lot. Every single day you make America stronger for my children and yours."

Giuliani's speech kicked off a trade show that featured exhibits of over 1,000 suppliers of building products and services, including many directly targeted at newly built and remodeled kitchens and baths. Some 70,000 visitors attended the four-day event, the Washington, DC-based NAHB said.