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STATE WIDE–Some Indiana businesses are suffering because they can’t find people to work. But, that problem likely won’t be solved by cutting off federal unemployment benefits. The labor shortage started before the pandemic, said Gerry Dick, with Inside Indiana Business.

“A lot of these business owners are putting as bit of the blame on those extended unemployment benefits. If you can make more money by not working, that’s what those folks are opting to do,” said Dick, talking with WIBC’s Tony Katz. “But, don’t forget heading into the pandemic we were talking frequently about this labor shortage.”

Dick said some of the blame is on not having enough people trained for the right jobs. So, the state may be looking to speak to people who are just getting old enough to work.

“A new effort is focuses on what’s being termed ‘Indiana’s emerging workforce’, that 18 to 34-year-old worker, those younger workers,” he said. The effort is to help get them connected with training and jobs.

But, Dick said the shortage is having an immediate impact, with some businesses closing because they can’t find enough workers.

“You get into the higher wage jobs, some of the advanced manufacturing and advanced distribution, where you do need technical training. That’s a big concern and those are good-paying jobs.”

Je said one of the dangers is that companies and people with money to invest could look somewhere else if Indiana isn’t providing sufficiently.

“If they can’t find the workforce here in Indiana, certainly they’ll go to where they can find the work force to make that investment.”