By Marissa Hatlen
Senator Ron Johnson wants to shift our nation’s perspective when it comes to boosting the manufacturing industry, saying during a recent visit to Sturgeon Bay that we need to take an honest look at the manufacturing labor shortage hitting local companies. For starters, Johnson said, that means recognizing that the way we talk about career options for young people has a heavy influence on the labor force we develop.
The Senator said our answer to the Manufacturing Institute’s projected nationwide shortage of 2 million skilled laborers must also include an in-depth rethinking of a broken immigration system. He said lawmakers need to understand that those who come to America “are willing to work their tails off” and that to live up to our legacy as a nation of immigrants, we need to make it much easier for workers to immigrate legally. While he didn’t offer a specific reform plan, Johnson did say his Governmental Affairs committee is slated to tackle the issue.