The drug epidemic now impacts the workforce shrinking the available pool of potential workers. My new favorite news site is Axios. The site is growing rapidly and offers skilled reporting, short bites with links (often to “competitors”), and a smart context. It includes not only political news but also specialized reporting on media, the future of work, energy, and more.

Steve LeVine writes a weekly Future of Work newsletter.  He wrote something a week or two ago to which I responded with some local observations. Most of these national reporters, and LeVine also works for a Think Tank in Washington, look at aggregate statistics and have little knowledge of life east of the Appalachians. So I told him that out here in the boondocks of Ohio there are many available jobs but that they cannot be filled because the remaining applicants can’t pass the first important test–the drug test.

Turns out there exist statistics for this phenomenon. Check out the link for more.

Important point: We all need to be finding ways to entice millennials and the following generation (whatever marketers call it) into manufacturing, engineering, and industry. But in our local communities, what can we do outside of work to help people in need to reach programs to get off drugs? This is a crucial society need.

LeVine also spotted a trend–American working class people are no longer mobile. People in this country have moved from place-to-place for jobs since the beginning. Several trends are converging to slow that mobility.

Important point: If you are planning new facilities, keep in mind that there may be an available workforce in many locations you may not have expected.

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