Unemployment rate up in the Northwest

Northwest BC has the highest unemployment rate in the province.

  • Aug. 17, 2012 6:00 p.m.

Northwest BC has the highest unemployment rate in the province, according to stats released on Aug. 10 by the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation, and it is the only region in BC in double digits.

The unemployment rate for the North Coast and Nechako region, which covers just west of Vanderhoof to Haida Gwaii, was 11.9 per cent this July. That number was down slightly from the 12.2 per cent in June but is the third highest rate this year.

When compared to last July’s 7.7 per cent unemployment figure, the number is up 4.2 per cent. For the first six months of 2012 the average unemployment rate in the region was 11.9 per cent compared to 8.2 per cent for the first six months of 2011.

In terms of the number of people employed, that figure has fallen from 44,300 last July to 38,400, a loss of 5,900 employed people in the northwest. So far this year the number of people employed in the region is down 7.9 per cent while provincially the figure has risen 1.9 per cent.

The next highest unemployment rate is in the Cariboo, which has an unemployment rate of 8.1 per cent, followed by the Kootenay region at 6.8 per cent.

The lowest unemployment rate in the province was in the Northeast, with an unemployment rate of just 4.3 per cent, while the provincial number is 6.9 per cent.

Shaun Thomas.