Prince George’s unemployment rate creeped up slightly in August, compared to July, but continues to be a provincial leader in economic recovery.
The city’s unemployment rate last month rose to 6.5 per cent, up from 5.7 in July, according to data released by Statistics Canada. In August 2020, the city’s unemployment rate was 9.7 per cent.
The number of people employed in the city dropped by about 1,000 between July and August, to 53,200 in August. That number was still roughly 3,000 higher than in August of 2020.
The percentage of working-age adults participating in the labour force declined one percentage point from 71 per cent to 70 per cent between July and August.
Despite the small setback in August, Prince George leads the province in economic recovery, B.C. Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon said in a statement issued on Friday.
"In areas throughout the province, our job recovery rate has been strong, led by Prince George at 108.1 (per cent),” Kahlon said. "B.C. has one of the lowest unemployment rates and a job recovery rate of 101.1 (per cent), leading Canada as the only province with employment above pre-pandemic levels for the third straight month.”
B.C. gained a total of 14,400 jobs in August, with those gains all in full-time employment, Kahlon said. Women filled 13,600 of those new positions, he added.
"These numbers show we are doing well, but we know there is more work to do. We continue to support the strength of our economic recovery with the BC Vaccine Card coming into effect on Sept. 13,” Kahlon said. "We all understand that a healthy economy and a healthy B.C. go hand in hand, so do your part and get vaccinated. Taking this important step is the best and easiest way to put COVID-19 in the past and set our province on a path for a strong economic recovery."