Governor Walz stops in Owatonna to address labor shortages

(ABC 6 News) – Minnesota is seeing record low unemployment but persistent worker shortages. Governor Tim Walz, along with business leaders in Owatonna, convened Wednesday to try and answer the question: where did all of Minnesota’s workers go?

Walz and Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan asked employers what they think is causing the labor shortage.

"Where is everybody? That’s what we get asked a lot," Walz said in the business roundtable.

"The number one turn-over is retirement," answered one business leader.

Many business owners are also saying that employees simply stop showing up to work because they have found better pay and benefits elsewhere. Walz, Flanagan, and Department of Employment and Economic Development Commissioner Steve Grove asked for ideas. They recognized that there is no singular answer to the problem.

Employer after employer asked for help with childcare. Other issues included better immigration policy and better career development for students.

This stop was part of DEED’s summer of jobs campaign — trying to connect employers with employees across the state.