Orleans unemployment trending downward, but still far more than year ago

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 24 July 2020 at 3:04 pm

Photo by Tom Rivers: These flowers are in the downtown Medina business district. This photo was taken in front of City Hall on Main Street.

Orleans County’s unemployment rate was 11.0 percent in June. That is far more than a year ago when the rate was 4.2 percent, but the rate is going down from the high of 15.9 percent in April. It then dropped to 11.5 percent in May.

In March, before the Covid-19 pandemic peak, the unemployment rate was 5.4 percent in Orleans County.

The unemployment rates for June in Western New York counties includes:

  • Allegany, 10.6 percent
  • Cattaraugus, 12.9 percent
  • Chautauqua, 11.2 percent
  • Erie, 13.5 percent
  • Genesee, 9.6 percent
  • Livingston, 9.5 percent
  • Monroe, 11.9 percent
  • Niagara, 14.6 percent
  • Orleans, 11.0 percent
  • Wyoming, 9.2 percent
  • Statewide, 15.7 percent

The latest data from the State Department of Labor shows the number of people employed in Orleans County is up by 1,000 in June to 15,300, compared to 14,300 in April. There were 15,000 working in the county in May. In March, before the pandemic caused many layoffs, there were 16,400 people working in the county.

The number of people unemployed in the county has gone from 900 in March to 2,700 in April, and then dropped to 1,900 in both May and June. That compared to 700 unemployed in May and June of 2019.

The highest unemployment rates in the state are in New York City with the Bronx at 24.7 percent, Kings at 20.5 percent, and Queens at 21.8 percent.

The only counties below a 9-percent rate include: Tompkins at 8.9 percent, Columbia at 8.8 percent, Yates at 8.5 percent, Chenango at 8.4 percent, and Hamilton at 7.7 percent.

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