The Connecticut Department of Labor reported the state lost a historic 266,300 net jobs in April to a level of 1,411,100 seasonally adjusted. During the first four months of this year, employment in the state fell by 276,800 seasonally adjusted, a 16.4% decline.
The data released in March that pointed to a job loss of 7,600 was revised to a loss of 22,100 jobs. However, the department stressed that the official unemployment rate for April “must be considered inaccurate” as a result of “data collection and misclassification issues in the Current Population Survey, the foundation of the state’s residential labor force statistics, (which) caused residential unemployment to be severely underestimated.
Private sector employment lost 246,400 positions amounting to 1,195,900 jobs over the month in April, and are now down by 256,100 seasonally adjusted jobs from the previous year. The government supersector fell by 19,900 jobs to a total of 215,200 and is down by 20,700 jobs from April 2019.
Within Fairfield County, the Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk region lost 70,800 net jobs last month and the Danbury area lost 13,300 positions.
“All industries saw significant declines, but the hardest hit included leisure and hospitality, retail trade, and education and health services,” said Andy Condon, director of the Office of Research at the Connecticut Department of Labor. “What remains to be seen is how many of these jobs were suspended and will return when public safety permits and how many were permanently lost.”
Joe Brennan, president and CEO of the Connecticut Business and Industry Association, called for a “dramatic reshaping” on how the state government and private sector can work together to build an economic resurrection.
“Let’s rebuild better and faster than other states,” he said. “Let’s get people back working by building a strong, vibrant private sector. We have a historic challenge ahead of us, one that can only be addressed successfully if we dramatically reshape the relationship between job creators and government. We need a new way of thinking, a collaborative approach that focuses on promoting and driving private sector growth rather than burdening employers with overregulation and unnecessary costs.”
Brennan added, “If we don’t change our thinking and adopt new approaches, I fear many of these jobs may never return.”