Montana opened the new year in a position of strength. We closed 2013 with an unemployment rate of 5.2%, compared to 7% national-wide. Now, we are looking forward to a new year of growth and opportunities for businesses, workers, and families.
With unemployment this low, our next challenge will be increasing wages, finding better job matches for workers, and increasing the overall skills-base of Montana’s workforce. In this issue of Main Street Montana, you’ll see that we are stepping up to this challenge.
As we look to grow Montana’s economy, we are committed to expanding opportunities for all Montanans, so that every worker can earn a livable wage, support their family, and enjoy our incredible quality of life under Montana’s Big Sky.
The Montana Department of Labor and Industry is committed to the economic vitality and success of both workers and their employers. In this issue of Main Street Montana, you’ll see the incredible work that is being done to provide valuable on-the-job training to workers, retool local communities to meet the high-skill needs of the 21st Century economy, promote safe workplaces, help injured workers get back to work, and supporting the unemployed as they face the uncertainty of career transitions.
It’s an exciting time to be engaged in public service for the people of Montana. As your Labor Commissioner, I am dedicated to promoting a culture of excellent customer service and innovation in our policies and programs. We recognize your hard work, and we’re here to support your success. Thank you for making Montana communities a great place to work, play, and raise our families.
Pam Bucy, Commissioner Montana Department of Labor and Industry