County’s jobless rate remains highFree Access

Unemployment is hitting workers in Mariposa County hard.

Out of the 58 counties in California, Mariposa County ranks 51st in unemployment, currently sitting at 17.5 percent.

Those are the preliminary numbers for May, when many businesses were shut down because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The 17.5 percent unemployment rate is above the statewide average of 15.9 percent, according to the California Employment Development Department. The U.S. unemployment rate stood at 13 percent.

The civilian unemployment rate was improved slightly over the May numbers, but still are high. The statistics show 1,360 people unemployed in May as compared to just 290 the previous year. That’s an increase of 369 percent.

With a tourism-based economy, it is not surprising one of the biggest hits is in the leisure and hospitality industry. The May numbers show 1,220 people still working in that industry in the county, compared to 1,940 a year ago, or 37 percent higher.

Retail employment, too, has taken a nosedive with statistics showing 260 people employed in May. That compares to 400 a year ago, or a drop of 35 percent.

Around the region, Madera County’s unemployment rate stood at 15.2 percent, Merced County was at 16.5 percent, Stanislaus County was at 16.1 percent and Tuolumne County was at 16.5 percent.

Also, nearby Mono County’s rate was listed at 28.9 percent, the highest in California.

Lassen County had the lowest unemployment rate in the state at 10 percent with Marin County next at 10.1 percent.

Lassen County is located in northern California and has just 8,870 people in the workforce. Marin County, one of the richest in America, has a workforce of 127,000 people.

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