Driven by the COVID-19 shutdown, April marked the greatest job loss in American history. The unemployment rate skyrocketed to 14.7 percent, and employers cut 20.5 million jobs.
Those figures are heart-wrenching. But as awful as they are, they do not fully capture workers’ hardships. To be counted as unemployed, people must be available for work and actively seeking it. With schools closed, job opportunities withering, and social distancing the new norm, many displaced workers don’t satisfy those requirements. Instead, they officially show up as having left the labor force.
From February to April, the labor force shrank by 8 million people. Add that to the more than 17 million increase in unemployment, and 25 million Americans are no longer employed. More than 61 percent of AmericansRead More »