Merkley's Statement on Oregon's Unemployment Numbers

Merkley's Statement on Oregon's Unemployment Numbers

Washington, DC – Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released a statement today following the announcement by the Oregon Employment Department that Oregon’s unemployment rate has remained nearly unchanged at 12 percent for the month of April.

“For five straight months, Oregon’s unemployment rate increased one percentage point every month.  While it is good news that we didn’t see that kind of jump in April, Oregon’s unemployment rate is unacceptable,” said Merkley.  “Oregonians are losing jobs they’ve had for years while small business owners are being put through the painful process of having to let go loyal employees.  We must act aggressively and create sustainable jobs so that our working families don’t have to struggle to put food on the table or send their kids to college.”


Oregon’s unemployment rate remained nearly unchanged from the revised rate of 11.9 percent in March to 12 percent in April, which is double the unemployment rate from one year ago.  Over 9,000 jobs were lost in April, less than in previous months. 

“Working families are the foundation of a strong economy,” said Merkley.  “We need to create a clean energy economy by modernizing our transportation system and building the green energy vehicles of the future.  We need to create jobs for our construction workers to retrofit our homes, buildings and schools to make them more energy efficient.  We need to retrain workers who have been left behind in our global economy and put them back to work.  When we invest in our workers we are building a stronger Oregon and a stronger nation.”

Industries that sustained the most job losses were construction and manufacturing, cutting nearly 6,000 jobs.  The government sector posted the largest job gains, adding 2,100 jobs to their payrolls. Educational and health services as well as leisure and hospitality posted job gains of 1,000.