Lethbridge: Another jolt on the local jobless front, as the Lethbridge - Medicine Hat
rate jumped from 5.7 per cent in March to 6.6 per cent last month.
That 6.6 per cent now surpasses the provincial rate, which inched up to
5.9-per cent last month from 5.7 in March.
Lethbridge Economic Development V-P of Business Development and Operations
Bruce West, blames wet weather which is impacting the agricultural sector and
delaying seeding and some construction.
According to West, "It's common for our region to experience slight
increases in unemployment during March and April". "Part of that is from workers
re-entering the workforce for seasonal employment. Those workers are now being
counted in the unemployed numbers".
There are also those workers shifting from part-time to full-time
employment. West says, "E-D-L has been advised that many crop producers in the
region (particularly potato, sugar beet and wheat growers) are seeing a delay
in the start of planting".
However, it should be noted, our local unemployment rate is still lower than
the 7.4 -per cent in April last year and the provincial economy is gradually
Provincially, the jobless rate inched up to 5.9 from 5.7, while the
National jobless rate dropped a tenth of a point to 7.6 (because of the 58,300
jobs created, mostly in Ontario). The national rate is now back to