Not only does Utah have one of the fastest-growing economies in the nation, it is also one of the fastest-growing states. We cannot ignore the connection between population growth and economic prosperity.
In the past 20 years, Utah has added more than 1,000,000 new residents, among them 500,000 new employees. Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute projections show this growth trend continuing, with almost 4,500,000 people expected to call Utah home in 2040.
The growing economy has been a changing economy as industries like health care, retail, and education have surpassed manufacturing as major employers for Utahns.
INDUSTRY BREAKDOWN BY EMPLOYMENT
Business leaders consistently identify the need for an increasingly diverse, skilled workforce to meet demands. Workforce development partnerships between employers and our education system help to address the challenges that accompany an evolving economy. The Salt Lake Chamber supports a balanced and fair legal immigration system that embraces our role as a free society that benefits from a diverse set of backgrounds and ideas.
Employers must also demonstrate a responsive and proactive approach to the needs of their employees in the areas of diversity and inclusion, mental health, child care, and the gender wage gap — offering sustainable solutions to the common barriers that cause employees to feel dissatisfaction, switch jobs, or leave the workforce entirely.
We support workforce development partnerships between employers and our K-12 and higher education system, specifically programs that identify workforce needs.
We support ongoing funding for the Build to Success program.
We support immigration laws that comply with the principles of the Utah Compact and promote the education, availability, and expertise of our workforce.
We support H-1B visa reform that raises the cap on the number of granted visas.
We support policies that maintain Utah as a welcoming place for Utahns and visitors of all backgrounds to live, work, and play.
We support policies that encourage best practices for addressing mental health issues and suicide prevention in the workplace.
We support family and personal leave policies that provide employers and employees with flexibility in addressing the needs of family and life outside of the workplace.
We support policies that address the quality and quantity of child care options, easing the burden and cost to employers and employees.
We support data-driven and employer-led policies that close the gender wage gap.