A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Kentucky’s latest unemployment report indicates slow recovery, but many still face challenges

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary March 2021 unemployment rate was 5%, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS). The preliminary March 2021 jobless rate was down 0.2 percentage points from February 2021 and up 0.8 percentage points from the 4.2% recorded for the state one year ago. The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate for March 2021 was 6%, down from the 6.2% reported...

Kentucky unemployment rate improves slightly in February mirroring trend in joblessness nationally

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary February 2021 unemployment rate was 5.2%, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS). The preliminary February 2021 jobless rate was down 0.1 percentage points from January 2021 and up 1% from the 4.2% recorded for the state one year ago. The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate for February 2021 was 6.2%, down from the 6.3% reported in...

John Schaaf: COVID responses are all over — and, all in all, Kentucky has done an admirable job

As the U.S. marks one year of the COVID pandemic, Kentucky and the other 49 states have experienced relentless arguments about the best way to deal with the virus: “Implement no restrictions and let people decide for themselves” v. “Implement restrictions to help people protect themselves and others.” The result of these competing positions is a national landscape of confusion, as each state...

Jobless rate improves slightly across Kentucky in newly-released January 2021 unemployment report

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary January 2021 unemployment rate was 5.3%, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency within the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet (EWDC). The preliminary January 2021 jobless rate was down 0.3 percentage points from December 2020 and up 1.2 percentage points from the 4.1% recorded for the state one year ago. The U.S. seasonally...

Beshear reports 963 cases, 37 deaths, opens 28 more vaccine sites, opens long-term care sites to visitors

Governor Andy Beshear announced the state is opening an additional 28 vaccination sites, for a total of 291 sites across the Commonwealth. “There is now a provider that has vaccine close to where everybody lives in the Commonwealth,” said Gov. Beshear. “There are some areas where you might have to drive just a little bit further, but we continue to add new sites for greater convenience. In many...

Beshear opens new regional vaccine sites; reports 2,500 cases, 58 deaths; says more vaccines coming

Gov. Andy Beshear announced four new regional COVID-19 vaccination sites Covington, Bowling Green, Glasgow and Murray. Public health Commissioner Dr. Steven Stack also said district and county health departments will receive more doses based on population served. “This is part of our continued commitment to make sure you don’t have to drive more than one county away to get your vaccine,” said...

Beshear reports 1,268 cases, 39 deaths, declining positivity rate; to announce vaccine info on Thursday

Gov. Andy Beshear announced Kentucky’s COVID-19 positivity rate has fallen below 10% for the first time since Dec. 31. Monday’s new case report was also the lowest for a Monday since Jan. 4. He reported 1,268 cases and 39 deaths and a positivity rate of 9.93%. Fayette County reported 149 cases. “Our cases are way too high, but I think when you look at this it shows how important the steps...

Beshear reports 4,750 new cases, 13 deaths, gives update on unemployment and vaccines

Gov. Andy Beshear announced the third-highest ever report of new COVID-19 cases, surpassed only by the Jan. 7 and Jan. 6 reports. The Governor has reported 15,403 new COVID-19 cases in just three days. He reported 4,750 new cases and 13 deaths and a positivity rate of 11.9%. Fayette County reported 302 cases. “We are at a really tough point once again in our war against COVID-19. We have successfully...

Governor reports ‘significant escalation’ with 1,054 new cases, four deaths; unemployment update

Gov. Andy Beshear on Tuesday reported 1,054 new COVID-19 cases and four deaths, bringing the state’s totals to 74,194 cases and 1,218 deaths. One hundred and forty-four of the newly reported cases were from children ages 18 and younger, of which 21 were children ages 5 and under. The youngest was only 3 months old. Fayette County reported 185 cases. “We are experiencing an escalation, our third...

Beshear reports 807 COVID-19 cases, 15 deaths; talks about census, voting, unemployment, more

Gov. Andy Beshear on Tuesday reported 807 new COVID cases and 15 deaths, bringing the state’s totals to 49,185 cases and 948 deaths. Among the new cases were 150 children 18 and under, which includes 24 children 5 and under. The youngest is just 27 days old. Fayette County had 84 cases. “The virus is certainly spreading more through our kids,” said Beshear. “That’s concerning. So keep...

Bill Straub: Jobless wait nervously while McConnell dawdles on the unemployment supplement they need

More than 30 million jobless workers – including about 140,000 in Kentucky – will soon find that their unemployment checks used for superfluous purposes like, oh, food and rent and various other play pretties, are a little lighter during these mean economic times because, apparently, a bunch of folks here in Washington could care less. Topping that list, unsurprisingly, is Senate Republican Leader...

Jason Bailey: Kentucky’s senators must agree to adequate federal aid for state to survive recession

A couple months ago, some public officials and corporate lobbyists began eagerly calling for states to reopen rapidly as the way to solve the COVID-19 problems of mass unemployment and struggling businesses. But the choice to reopen before the virus had been controlled and minimized — and without adequate testing, contact tracing and protections for workers and consumers — has been a dismal failure. COVID-19...

Bill Straub: Leave it to Mitch to make terrible situation unbearable, and welcome to McConnell World

With the Covid-19 juggernaut sweeping across the nation, sidestepping the federal government’s thus-far paltry efforts to rein it in, you can always count on Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root-‘n-Branch’’ McConnell to make a terrible situation even worse. Despite recent bromides paying tribute to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases...

Commentary: It’s imperative for federal government to step up, provide the resources for rent relief

By Adrienne Bush, Marilyn Harris and Tiffany Marthaler Special to KyForward In March, this country’s economy was brought to a scratching halt by the COVID-19 pandemic. Millions of people are out of work, with little hope of returning to a new “normal” anytime soon. In June, three months into the COVID-19 state of emergency, many of us watched the lines of hundreds of people still waiting for...

Study reveals children in Central, Eastern Kentucky more likely to face hunger than overall population

God’s Pantry Food Bank announced the release of Map the Meal Gap 2020, the latest report by Feeding America on food insecurity and the cost of food at both the county and congressional district level. It is the only study that provides food insecurity data at the local level. Map the Meal Gap 2020 reveals that food insecurity exists in every county in God’s Pantry Food Bank service area. It also...

Col Owens: It’s time to raise the minimum wage, the single most effective way to undergird our economy

Henry Ford once said, when asked why he paid his workers so well, “so they can buy the cars they make.” He recognized that a robust market for goods and services requires consumers with the means to purchase them. The minimum wage is the single most effective public policy for ensuring that low-wage employers compensate employees more adequately. It also helps to undergird our economy, which is...

State releases unemployment data for November; for first time, no county exceeds 10 percent

Unemployment rates fell in 107 Kentucky counties between November 2017 and November 2018, rose in nine, and stayed the same in four counties, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. For the first time since October 2000, Kentucky did not have any counties with an unemployment rate of 10 percent or above. Woodford...

Kentucky’s unemployment rate remains unchanged in November at 4.5 percent

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary November unemployment rate was 4.5 percent, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics, an agency within the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. That was unchanged from October and the same as in November 2017. According to figures released on Thursday, Kentucky added 277 individuals to its civilian labor force, bringing the state’s...

Unemployment rate unchanged for October; holding at 4.5% according to state Center for Statistics

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary October unemployment rate was 4.5 percent, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics, an agency within the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. The jobless rate was unchanged from September and was down 0.1 from the 4.6 percent recorded for October 2017. A total of 1,590 were added to the civilian labor...

Education and Workforce Development Cabinet April unemployment report remains steady at four percent

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary April 2018 unemployment rate was 4 percent, according to the Kentucky Center for Education and Workforce Statistics (KCEWS). The unemployment rate for April 2018 was unchanged from the 4 percent reported for March 2018. The preliminary April 2018 jobless rate was down 1.2 percentage points from the 5.2 percent recorded for the state in April 2017. The U.S....