THE EMPLOYMENT picture continues to improve with a regional jobless rate of 7 per cent in June compared to 8 per cent in May.
The June rate is markedly better than June 2010’s 11.9 per cent while May’s is better than May 2010 when the rate was 11.9 per cent.
These are not Employment Insurance figures but are taken from Statistics Canada interviews of people more than 15 years of age from Vanderhoof to the North Coast who consider themselves part of the labour force whether they are working or not.
June 2011’s labour force total is listed at 47,400 people with 44,100 working and 3,300 saying they are unemployed.
That’s an improvement from the 44,700 total labour force calculated in June 2010 with 39,400 being employed and 5,300 people saying they are out of work.
June’s jobless total was less than the province’s 7.4 per cent as a whole and only the oil and gas-rich northeast section of the province had a better rate at 4 per cent.
That’s a much different story than in recent years when the northwest routinely topped the list as having the worst regional jobless rate, often in the 13-14 per cent range.
The Cariboo had a rate of 7.4 per cent in June while the Kootenays rate was 8.3 per cent with the Thompson-Okanagan coming in at 8.1 per cent.
The lower mainland had a rate of 8.3 per cent.