The economy added 192,000 jobs in March, but the unemployment rate remained at February’s 6.7% level, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. March’s job gain outpaced February’s 175,000 increase but is still far short of what is needed to dig the economy out of the job hole left by the Great Recession.
AFL-CIO Policy Director Damon Silvers said today's jobs numbers show that our economy continues to recover, “but not robustly enough to provide enough jobs for the millions who remain out of work or to lead to real income gains for most Americans."
The number of long-term unemployed people (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) dipped slightly to 3.7 million in March. While the problem of long-term joblessness continues to plague the economy, efforts to revive the Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits , which House Republicans allowed to expire at the end of last year, have been delayed.
While the Senate is scheduled to vote on reviving the jobless aid next week, House Republican leaders say they will oppose the Senate bill. So far, nearly 2.3 million jobless workers have lost benefits and that number continues to rise. Silvers said:
There are more than 2.3 million people who are out of work and have exhausted their benefits. In the past these kinds of numbers would have led to bipartisan support for extended unemployment benefits. It is inexcusable for House Republicans to continue to block the restoration of extended UI benefits and instead choose to give tax breaks to corporations and the rich.
Call your representatives at 845-809-4509 and urge them to pass the emergency unemployment benefits extension.
Last month’s biggest job gains were in professional and business services (57,000), food services (30,000), health care (19,000), construction (19,000) and mining and logging (7,000).
Employment in other major industries, manufacturing, transportation and warehousing, wholesale trade, financial activities and government, changed little over the month.
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates of adult women increased to 6.2% from last month’s 5.9%. The rates for adult men (6.2%), whites (5.8%), blacks (12.4%) and Latinos (7.9%) changed little in March.