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Report: Skilled Labor Shortages will Create Higher Labor Costs, Impact Consumers

International think tank The Conference Board recently published a report that finds the threat of labor shortages is more acute in blue-collar occupations than white-collar occupations.  Over the course of the last year, unemployment among blue-collar workers has trended anywhere .08%- 1.2% below the national average. The report projects that the blue-collar labor force will shrink by as much as 4.7% between 2022 and 2027.

The Signatory Wall and Ceiling Contractors Alliance (SWACCA) members employ many thousands of carpenters, drywall finishers, plasterers and laborers throughout the country – all occupations potentially affected by labor shortages.  

While The Conference Board’s report predicts a challenging future for employers and consumers, it also clearly illustrates the acute need for technical education and vocational training for our nation’s students.  This demand also presents an opportunity for a lucrative career for those looking to develop their skills in the trades.  

High quality, registered apprenticeship programs present the best opportunities for individuals considering careers in the skilled trades. Through these programs workers earn industry-leading wages and benefits while receiving the highest quality of vocational education and training available.  The thousands of employers that participate in registered apprenticeship programs feel confident employing skilled individuals who are trained to the highest standards available.

SWACCA is a leader in supporting and promoting industry-funded registered apprenticeship programs, jointly managed by employers and labor, that drive the wall and ceiling construction industry forward.  Earlier this year, SWACCA joined with other trade organizations to sign the Pledge to America’s Workers, promising 50,000 new training opportunities in the construction industry.  These efforts and more are aimed at supporting SWACCA members through the challenges of skilled labor shortages.

Learn more about the Conference Board’s report here.