Jobless rates jump up

Published 4:04 am Monday, July 25, 2011

Unemployment rates in the county and state rose in June, according to figures release by the Alabama Department of Industrial Relations on Friday.

Escambia County’s rate was up more than a percentage point, from 11.2 percent in May to 12.4 percent in June. Alabama’s rate rose from 9.6 percent in May to 9.9 percent in June.

“While we are disappointed to report any increase in our seasonally adjusted unemployment rate, we keep in mind the contributing factors that led us here,” DIR Director Tom said Surtees. “We still have hundreds of Alabamians unemployed as a direct result of the tornadoes of last April and the national unemployment rate also continues to rise. On the positive side, we have observed an uptick in the number of discouraged workers re-entering the job market in their employment search. There are over 33,000 more Alabamians working in June than in January, but during this same period over 50,000 came into the workforce. ”

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The counties with the lowest unemployment rates were: Shelby County at 7.7 percent, Coffee County at 8.4 percent and Limestone County at 8.7 percent. The counties with the highest unemployment rates were Wilcox County at 23.4 percent, Perry County at 19.9 percent and Dallas County at 19.1 percent.