MORE people are working in northwestern B.C. this year than last.

Northwestern B.C. jobless rate drops

But lower mainland remains provincial jobs powerhouse

  • Fri Aug 12th, 2016 3:00pm
  • News

MORE PEOPLE were working in the northwest in July then in June and or in July of last year, indicates latest information from Statistics Canada.

That helped lower the unemployment rate, the federal agency’s stats show.

For the area from the north coast to just this side of Vanderhoof, this July’s unemployment rate was 7.5 per cent, less than June’s 8.1 per cent and less than the July 2015 rate at 8.2 per cent.

At the same time, 44,500 people were working in July 2016, more than June’s 43,100 and July 2015’s 42,800. As for numbers of the unemployed, July 2016’s figure was 3,600 compared to June’s 3,600 and July 2015’s 3,800.

Taken together the total labour force of those working and of those who declared themselves eligible to work numbered 48,100 in July, 46,900 in June and 46,600 in July 2015.

The figures gathered by Statistics Canada are not taken from those collecting employment insurance but are based on interviews of people 18 years and older living from the north coast to just this side of Vanderhoof. Because people can declare themselves part of the labour force or not, regardless of if they are working, the monthly statistics can reflect how people feel about their own job prospects.

Based on the Statistics Canada figures, the northwest’s population also increased from July 2015 when it was 66,400 to this July’s 66,900.

July 2016’s unemployment rate of 7.5 per cent was third highest of B.C.’s regions, behind the Northeast’s 8.8 per cent and the Cariboo’s 8.3 per cent.

The Lower Mainland at 4.9 per cent had the lowest regional unemployment rate overall while the provincial average was 5.8 per cent.