Nearly two years since the beginning of the great quarantine, unemployment in the L.A.-Long Beach-Glendale area is at 7.8%, at least as of October 2021, down from 10.3% in June 2021, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. But the number is surely higher, especially given L.A.’s “informal” economy, or the city’s undocumented communities who number at just under a million people but are unlikely to be reflected accordingly in the BLS’s data-gathering. The BLS report also doesn’t count people who are underemployed, or working less hours than they’d like or need to, nor those who sought work unsuccessfully in the last year and exited or “vanished” from the work-force as a result. Yet even placing these discrepancies aside for a moment, 7.8% is still at least 390,000 people of “working age” in the county without a stable or practical income this holiday season. Keep them close in mind this winter season, Los Angeles.


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