Americans Support Manufacturing but Don’t Want to Work in Manufacturing Jobs

Manufacturers everywhere in the U.S. are struggling to attract skilled workers. The issue is the same in Ashtabula County.

A new report, “Overwhelming Support: U.S. Public Opinions on the Manufacturing Industry,” published by The Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte, found overwhelming support for the U.S. manufacturing industry. The percentage of respondents who believe manufacturing is very important or important to America’s economic prosperity was 90%; to America’s standard of living, 89%; and to America’s national security, 72%. Yet only 37% of those respondents would encourage their child to pursue a career in manufacturing, and only 19% of the respondents had parents who encouraged them to pursue a manufacturing career.

Research from the National Employment Law Project, “Manufacturing Low Pay: Declining Wages in the Jobs that Built America’s Middle Class,” shows that this group not only has not gained from manufacturing’s recent growth, it has lost, dropping by 4.4% from 2003 to 2013 to a wage level that’s 7.7% below the median for all occupations.

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