Washington, D.C. — The following is a statement from Andy Van Kleunen, CEO of National Skills Coalition, on the September jobs report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
We’ve heard a lot in the past few months that the economy is recovering faster than expected. But what these numbers show is the true reality that this recession has been the most unequal in modern American history and the recovery is grinding to a halt. The marginal reductions in unemployment have been seen by mostly white workers – the unemployment rate remains in double digits for African Americans and Latinos compared to 7 percent for white workers. There are fewer workers participating in the labor market today than just last month. In short, people are still hurting.
The depth of the economic pain and suffering that millions of workers and local small businesses are still going through every day is real. The devastating economic impacts that the recession has had on workers of color, low-income families, immigrants, and workers with a high school degree or less is real. And what’s missing in the K-shaped versus U-shaped recovery conversation is the lack of recognition that we’re likely to see different recovery trajectories for different workers, industries, and even different sized companies within industries over the next few years.
The key is to start investing now in an aggressive and inclusive recovery strategy that prioritizes workers and industries that have suffered the most from this crisis and have traditionally been left out past recovery efforts. We must continue to provide relief for workers and businesses in the short-term. But it is also imperative that we make long-term investments today to ensure that every worker and every industry is empowered to succeed and is included in the post-pandemic recovery tomorrow.