Mike Rowe sounded the alarm on this surprising threat to national security

Jun 26, 2024

Mike Rowe has never been more concerned about what he’s seeing in the country.

Now he’s speaking out about one problem that could upend society.

And Mike Rowe sounded the alarm on this surprising threat to national security.

Mike Rowe says retirements in skilled trades are creating a national crisis

Dirty Jobs host Mike Rowe has been sounding the alarm on the growing shortages of workers in the skilled trades.

These are thankless jobs that keep the country running by keeping the lights on and the water flowing.

Now there’s a growing shortage of workers in the skilled trades.

Rowe broke down the problem during an appearance on The Brian Kilmeade Show on Fox News Radio.

“The more immediate mathematical problem revolves around the numbers five and two,” Rowe explained. “Every year, for every five tradespeople who retire, two people replace them. This has been going on for about 18 years, and the math has become so critical and so under-reported. You can’t find a single major corporation today who relies to some degree on skilled labor [that] isn’t struggling to hire.”

He said that major corporations are worried about what this means for the country.

“I sound like a broken record with this, but Brian . . . not a week goes by [when] I don’t talk to a big organization who is quietly saying, ‘we don’t know how this is going to come out,'” Rowe continued. 

Rowe has made it his mission to encourage more young people into the skilled trades through efforts like his mikeroweWORKS Foundation.

He’s called the current trend of retirees not being replaced “scary.”

The National Student Clearinghouse report found that enrollment in vocational community colleges has ticked up but that’s still not enough to replace the workers leaving the workforce.

Shortage of workers in the skilled trades is a national security threat

Rowe said that the skilled worker shortage is becoming a national security threat to the country.

“This is only a matter of national security, and just because my foundation is in the thick of it doesn’t mean it’s not true,” Rowe said. “My slip might be showing here a little bit, and sorry to commandeer your rant with this one, but if we’re going to talk about scary numbers, that’s scarier to me because we are right on the verge of not being able to make stuff.”

Critical industries like manufacturing might not be able to produce things in the United States if they don’t have the workforce.

“If making stuff in this country matters, if a balanced workforce is important, if the skilled trades are still a thing . . . this is it, man,” Rowe warned. “I’m ringing the alarm bell. It’s about to tip.”

The soaring cost of college has caused more young people to look at the skilled trades as a profession.

Kilmeade asked Rowe for his thoughts on the country’s growing debt problem.

“One thing that’s pretty clear is, we are buried in debt,” Rowe stated. “We are going to have $50 trillion in debt in 20 years . . . This is going to kill us. We’re spending way too much on social programs . . . How do we get out of something like this?”

“The short answer is, I don’t know,” Rowe said. “It’s going to be very, very painful.”

Rebuilding the country’s ranks of skilled workers has become a national security issue. 

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