Unemployment

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The long wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have resulted in large numbers of disabled veterans, many of whom go unnoticed by the public at large. And, now the coronavirus has placed yet another burden on that vulnerable population. Delmarva Public Media's Don Rush talked with Ashleigh Birnes, deputy national communications director for Disabled American Veterans, about their priorities as the nation begins voting in the national elections.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — More than 51,000 Maryland residents filed for unemployment last week. The state's labor department reported Thursday that 51,108 people filed for unemployment benefits. That's down from 65,805 people who filed for benefits the week before that. More than 607,000 Maryland residents have filed for unemployment in the last nine weeks. The U.S. Labor Department says roughly 38.6 million people have filed for jobless aid in the United States since the coronavirus forced millions of businesses to close their doors and shrink their workforces. Meanwhile, Maryland Gov.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware's unemployment rate dropped below 4 percent last month for the first time in a decade.

The Delaware Department of Labor released data on Friday that shows the state's unemployment rate fell to 3.9 percent in June.

That's the lowest it's been since February 2008.

Delaware's unemployment rate has dropped in each of the past five months. It's now down 0.7 percent from last June.

Don Rush

BALTIMORE (AP) - Labor market analysts say Maryland added 11,500 jobs in February, although the state's unemployment rate held steady at 4.2 percent.

The Baltimore Sun reports that last month's job gains powered the strongest three-month surge of job creation in Maryland since the Great Recession.

The gains, reported Friday by the U.S. Labor Department, pulled more than 14,000 people into the labor force, as people started working or looking for work.  The Labor Department also revised its figures for January to a gain of 13,200, nearly double the previous estimate.

Don Rush

The unemployment rate in Delaware inched up slightly to 4.4 percent in January – the first change since July when it was 4.3 percent.

That’s according to the Labor Department.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the increase appears to be the result of people returning to the workforce faster than its expansion.

The labor force had grown by 600 people while the number employed rose by 400.

The paper reports that the figures are based on the latest monthly surveys of around 13-hundred businesses and 850 households in the First State.

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There is a proposal in Delaware to take up some of the unemployment slack by creating government jobs for those without one.

Under the plan around 160-thousand hours of work would be available at wages that range from $10 an hour to $15 an hour.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the cost would be around $2 million.

The paper reports that $100-thousand would come from the private sector.

The pilot program proposed by the Work A Day Earn A Pay task force would start in May of next year.

If successful a full program could be brought up to speed.

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia's unemployment rate was 4.3 percent in September, the lowest it's been since 2008, even though the state lost a total of 200 jobs last month.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe's office said Tuesday that Virginia's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has declined for three straight months and is lower than the national average.

But Virginian's job growth continues to lag behind the nation and its unemployment rate is dropping because its labor force is shrinking, according to the Virginia Employment Commission.

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia's jobless rate fell to 4.8 percent in December, marking the state's lowest unemployment rate since October 2008.

The state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was down from 5 percent in November and down from 5.2 percent a year ago.

The Virginia Employment Commission says job gains were seen in six major industries, including leisure and hospitality and total government. Job losses were recorded in five other industries, including construction.

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A Senate panel has killed a proposal to raise Virginia's minimum wage.

The Senate Committee on Commerce and Labor voted 11-to-3 Monday to table a proposal aimed at incrementally raising the state's minimum wage above the current $7.25 an hour to $10.10 an hour by 2017.

Proponents included liberal activists and labor officials. They said raising the state's current minimum wage would help low-income workers escape poverty.

While corporations have enjoyed growing profits rise, they argued that workers' wages have stagnated.

Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A newly released labor report shows Delaware's unemployment rate fell from 6.4 percent in October to 6 percent in November.

The report, released on Friday, says Delaware added 3,200 new jobs in November, and that the unemployment rate in the state has dropped significantly in the past few years. The report says Delaware was named fourth in the nation in job growth over the past 12 months, trailing only North Dakota, Utah and Texas. The report says employers in Delaware added 12,300 new jobs between November 2013 and October 2014.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - A new analysis shows the number of Delaware residents receiving food stamps has nearly tripled over the past decade.

Date obtained from the Department of Health and Social Services shows the number of food stamp recipients in each zip code. Every county experienced an increase. The growth in the number of food stamp recipients outpaced the 14 percent increase in the state's population.

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NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - A state panel looking at how to attract and retain more blue-collar jobs in Delaware is meeting to finalize its recommendations to the General Assembly.

Lawmakers established the Blue Collar Task Force last year, citing Delaware's stubborn employment rate, which has hovered around 7 percent for most of the past year, and manufacturing base that was hit hard by the recession of 2008.

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Salisbury gained around 500 jobs in February but it’s unemployment rate was still the highest for Maryland metropolitan areas in Maryland.

A new report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that the rate ticked down from 9.9 percent to 9.5 percent.

That’s the lowest for February in Salisbury since 2009 when it stood at 9.4 percent.

The Salisbury metropolitan area includes Wicomico and Somerset Counties.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the total for those with jobs or looking for jobs rose from just over 61,700 to 62-thousand.