FAIRFIELD, Conn. – The unemployment rate in Fairfield rose slightly in July but is still below the state and national average.
According to the Connecticut Department of Labor, Fairfield's unemployment rate rose from 6.9 percent in June to 7 percent in July, an increase of just more than 50 people. The state's rate is 8.3 percent unemployment, the labor department said, according to the unadjusted July numbers. The country's unemployment rate is 7.7 percent.
“Fairfield as a town tends to have a lower unemployment rate than the region or the labor markets or in the state,” said Mark Barnhart, director of Community and Economic Development in Fairfield. “It’s higher than the historical average, but it has been trending lower over the last year or so.”
Fairfield started off the year with a 7.7 percent unemployment, the state Department of Labor reported, dropping by a 1 percentage point in February to 6.7 percent and to 6.2 in April.
When asked, Barnhart said the rise in unemployment between May and July could be that more people are back entering into the workforce.
And the Department of Labor reported that more than 1,200 people have joined the workforce since January, with more than 500 between June and July.
“By and large Fairfield has fared pretty well, and that’s a factor of many things not the least of which is that we have a pretty talented workforce,” Barnhart said. “The climate here is improving, but we’re going to have bumps along the way.”