An October 18 Forbes.com article on expanding apprenticeship highlights the journey worker-to-apprenticeship ratio legislation, backed by ABCWI, that would allow apprenticeship trainers to employ more apprentices. The article places particular attention to the Wisconsin’s ratios being much more stringent than many states that allow for one-to-one or even two or three apprentices to one journey worker, in some cases.
Currently, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development allows for a one-to-one ratio, but only for the first apprentice. DWD requires two or more journey workers for a second apprentice in many trades, which strictly limits those contractors interested in developing more skilled workers. The legislation would eliminate the DWD requirements and allow an across-the-board, one-to-one requirement and, therefore, allow contractors to train more individuals at any given time. The bill would also eliminate requirements that the carpentry apprenticeship last four years and the plumbing apprenticeship last five years.