HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Unemployment in Alabama hit a record high last month. The unemployment rate is 12.9 percent.
April’s numbers reflect a full month of job losses related to the COVID-19 pandemic. In March, the unemployment rate was 3 percent.
Lauderdale and Colbert Counties were the hardest hit in the Valley. In Lauderdale County, unemployment was at 14.6 percent. In Colbert County, it was 16.5 percent.
Madison County comes in slightly better than the rest of the state with a 10.4 percent unemployment rate. Before the coronavirus crisis, Madison County’s unemployment rate was at a record low at 2.1 percent.
Historically, this is one of the highest unemployment rates in Madison County, but Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong said he’s thankful it is one of the lowest in the state of Alabama. “You think about 2.1 percent that is something we have strive for, for a low unemployment rate. You think in 2012 we had a 8.2 percent unemployment rate brought that to 2.1. We are at 10.4, I promise you we will do everything we can do to drop it every week in front of us,” said Strong.
Department of Labor statistics showed nearly 283,000 people lost their jobs in March and April in Alabama.
Statewide, the worst cuts made last month were in the leisure and hospitality industry, where almost 80,000 people lost their jobs in places like restaurants and hotels.