Tuesday, September 07, 2004


State of Working Ohio

Policy Matters just issued its new State of Working Ohio 2004 report and, gee whiz, there are apparently a few problems with the economic work Bush, Taft and the Republican-led Ohio General Assembly have been doing. Some highlights from PMO:

• Ohio lost 234,000 jobs between 2000 and 2003. This percentage job loss was the third worst in the nation.

• The state has only added 19,700 net jobs since the end of 2003.

• Ohio's 2003 underemployment rate was 10.4%, the highest since the statistic began being measured, and up from a low of 6.8% in 2000.

• African-American unemployment in Ohio jumped 63% in two years, from 7.4% in 2001 to 12.1% in 2003.

• Ohio's median wage fell in 2003. It had been more than $1.00 an hour above the national median wage in 1979, in inflation-adjusted 2003 dollars. By 2003, Ohio's $13.14 median wage was below the national median ($13.62).

• Union membership has plunged in Ohio and the nation over the past twenty years. In 2003, just one in six of Ohio's workers were unionized (16.7 percent), down from one in four (25.1 percent) in 1983. The unionization rates were still well above the national average.

• Non-unionized workers made less than three-fourths of what unionized workers earned hourly in 2003. For African Americans and women, benefits of unionization were even greater. Black workers not in a union earned 69.4 percent of what unionized black workers earned each hour. Women without unions earned 72.6 percent of what unionized women earned in 2003.


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