Mike Rowe Calls America’s Skilled Worker Shortage an ‘Enormous Problem’

by Samantha Whidden
(Photo by Gary Gershoff/WireImage)

Speaking out on the skilled worker shortage in the U.S., Mike Rowe stated that the situation is an “enormous problem” for the country. 

During a recent appearance on Fox News’ America’s Newsroom, Mike Rowe shared details about the labor market. And the need for trade workers is at a four-decade high. “There is just simply never been a need for skilled workers like there is right now,” the How America Works host stated. “If you’re inclined to think that way, to work that way, the world is your oyster. If you’re not, sadly, and you’re a man, statistically, you’re probably sitting at home spending 2,000 hours a year looking at your screen.” 

Mike Rowe stated that the topic needs to be discussed more. “We’ve got to do something about it,” he said. “Not in a scholarly lecturing way, but we’ve got to acknowledge it because it’s enormous.” 

Mike Rowe went on to point out that the labor participation rate is key when evaluating economic health. However, it is not always “honed in” as it should be. The TV personality further explained that it is the “least reported” indicator with the “biggest” impact on the economy. 

“You got 7 million men right now, prime age 25 to 54,” Mike Rowe continued. “Not only not working, but affirmatively not looking for work. That is having an impact, I think, on the economy, and according to [economist] Nick [Eberstadt], an impact unlike anything we’ve ever seen before.

Mike Rowe Says There Is ‘A Lot of People’ Who Need a Hand Who Are Well-Intended & Willing to Work 

Meanwhile, Mike Rowe opened up on the importance of work ethic and how it is needed now more than ever. 

“The reality is, there are a lot of people who need a hand who are well-intended,” Mike Rowe stated. “And willing to work. The other reality is there are millions of people who have been given a hand and as a result, have done absolutely nothing with the help they’ve been afforded.”

Mike Rowe stated that the two things happen at the same. However, he doesn’t know why they divide the U.S. “I don’t know. It’s not necessary, but it comes down to the individual. And I’m telling you, you’ll see it on tonight’s [How America Works], if you’re an individual who’s willing to work, the path to prosperity is crystal clear.”

Mike Rowe previously spoke about the lack of appreciation when it comes to blue collar workers. He said that many Americans do not fully understand manufacturing processes or even farming. “There are two different things,” Rowe said. “Realization and appreciation. Most of us have never really realized it, but we’ve always intuitively appreciate it. We know that when we flip the switch and the light comes on, that that’s the result of a miracle. And that miracle is made possible by men and women doing things out of sight and out of mind.”