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Scott Walker, Governor
Raymond Allen, Secretary

Department of Workforce Development
Secretary's Office

201 E. Washington Avenue
P.O. Box 7946
Madison, WI 53707-7946
Telephone: (608) 266-3131
Fax: (608) 266-1784
Email: sec@dwd.wisconsin.gov

Thursday, September 1, 2016
CONTACT: DWD Communications, 608-266-2722
On the Web: http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/news/
On Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/WIWorkforce
On Twitter: @WIWorkforce

Governor Walker Proclaims September as Workforce Development Month

MADISON – Governor Scott Walker proclaimed September as Workforce Development Month to highlight the state's efforts to develop Wisconsin's talent and provide Wisconsin employers with a sustainable pipeline of workers to help grow the Wisconsin economy. Throughout the month, the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) and workforce partners will hold events and highlight efforts to assist Wisconsin workers in obtaining gainful, family-supporting employment.

"The state's unemployment rate is at 4.2 percent, its lowest point since 2001, and our labor force participation rate is in the top 10 states in the country," Governor Walker said. "Workforce Development Month is a great time to highlight our ongoing commitment to connect Wisconsin workers with not just jobs, but careers. Through targeted investments in worker training programs, we will continue to prepare workers for jobs in the modern economy, and ensure a strong talent pool for employers looking to fill their labor market needs."

Wisconsin's economy is strong, and continues to get stronger. The latest monthly employment estimates from the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show that Wisconsin has added a statistically significant 45,700 jobs from July 2015 to July 2016, including 6,400 manufacturing jobs and 7,700 construction jobs. Wisconsin ranked fifth highest for number of manufacturing jobs gained out of 48 states that were included in the data series. Wisconsin's manufacturing job gain since Governor Walker took office is top ten in the nation.

"With tens of thousands of job openings posted on our JobCenterofWisconsin.com website on any given day, we know that employers are still in need of skilled talent," DWD Secretary Ray Allen said. "Workforce Development Month is a prime opportunity to build awareness of the programs and services we offer to employers to assist them in building their own pipeline of skilled workers."

DWD is Wisconsin's lead talent development agency, working with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), the Wisconsin Technical College System, Department of Public Instruction, University of Wisconsin (UW) System, Wisconsin Workforce Development Association, Wisconsin's 11 workforce development boards, and other stakeholders to develop Wisconsin's talent and provide employers with workers who have the skills needed to succeed in today's economy.

DWD leaders and regional workforce partners will recognize Workforce Development Month across the state through business tours and staff recognition events.

You can find more information about your local workforce development board online.