Many people were dismayed to see the national unemployment rate rise above 10 percent for the first time in three decades but that rate is even higher in Brooklyn where 125,000 people are out of work.
The Department of Labor announced earlier this month that the federal unemployment rate has hit 10.2%, the highest that it has been in more than 25 years. Later, the Labor Department also disclosed that the unemployment rate in Brooklyn had hit 11 percent.
This was not promising news for Brooklynites seeing as how every expert has predicted that the unemployment rate will rise even higher before the year’s end.
What is worse is that the numbers do not reflect the phenomenon of “underemployment.” The “underemployment” rate calculates those workers who still technically have jobs but their hours have been severely cut and they can no longer work enough hours to support themselves and their families.
Various estimates place the national underemployment rate at as much as 20 percent.
The news comes at a time when the entire state is facing massive economic collapse that could rival the crisis in California. Earlier this week Governor David Paterson claimed that New York state will go broke before the end of the year if immediate budget cuts aren’t made.
In total, he has proposed more than $3 billion in cuts, much of which will come out of the education budget and money for hospitals.
We will have more on the state’s economic troubles later this week.