The Work Rate: D.C. unemployment falls to 8.5 percent

Posted: November 27, 2012 in Jobs, Unemployment Rate

JOBS sign on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C.

By Henry Kerali

– The Washington, D.C., unemployment rate dropped to 8.5 percent in the month of October, a 0.2 percent decrease from September. Ward eight continues to have the highest unemployment rate out of the District’s eight wards coming in with a rate of 21 percent. Meanwhile, ward three has the lowest unemployment rate at 2.1 percent.

In a report from the Department of Employment Services (DOES), preliminary numbers for the month of October show there was an increase of 4,100 jobs in the area bringing the overall total to 738,600 jobs. While the private sector gained 4,800 jobs, the public sector payroll fell by 700 jobs.

D.C. Unemployment Rate for October 2012

D.C. Unemployment Rate for October 2012. (Graphic by Henry Kerali)

– Meanwhile, DOES also confirmed that the American Job Center – Southwest has been relocated from its original location of 4100 South Capitol Street, NW, to 3720 Martin Luther King Avenue, SE. As well as providing services such as workforce development and resume workshops, the new job center will also offer unemployment compensation assistance.

– Furthermore, DOES and the District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) are combining forces to create the Re-Employment, Training and Assistance Program (RETAP). The program has been setup to aide former DCPS employees in their efforts to find new jobs. This takes place in light of recent events that saw many employees lose their jobs as DCPS made cutbacks to the workforce.

– Lastly, thirty-three unemployed veterans were hired during the Veterans Path2Work event at Gallaudet University on Nov.5. The event, part of the ‘One City, One Hire’ initiative, which seeks to get the District’s unemployed back to work, had more than 100 veterans in attendance. DOES director Lisa Maria Mallory expressed her delight in the turnout:

I am pleased with the outcome of Veterans Path2Work. I cannot think of a better way to honor our Veterans than by helping them to transition back into the workforce and assisting them with finding sustainable employment.

That’s it for this month’s round-up! Stay tuned later this week as D.C. Work Rate looks into how the looming ‘fiscal cliff’ could impact the District’s local economy.

(This photo was taken by vpickering, via Flickr, using a Creative Commons license.)

  1. […] in the city. Citing these threats and a desire to reduce D.C.’s high unemployment — which is upwards of 20% in poorer areas like Ward 8 — Gray has voiced his opposition to the […]

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