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Poll of Unemployed Americans Indicates Worker Shortage Crisis Unlikely to Ease

Less than half of Americans polled who lost their job during the pandemic and remain unemployed say they are actively and consistently looking for work, with one in five reporting that they are not looking for work at all, according to a new poll released last week by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Here are some top findings from the poll:

  • More than half (53%) of Americans who became unemployed during the pandemic say they are only somewhat active, or not very active at all, in looking for work. 
  • Nearly two-thirds (65%) don’t expect to be back working before the new year, and 8% say they never plan to return to work.
  • More than one in ten (13%) have left multiple jobs during the pandemic.
  • Among those currently unemployed who have held multiple jobs since April 2020, 57% held their most recent position for three months or less.
  • Almost half said they have been using pandemic incentives or stimulus payments, or tapping into savings and investments, to get by.
  • A third (32%) want and expect to switch industries.
  • A hiring bonus of $1,000 remains the top incentive most apt to bring unemployed workers back.

Pennsylvania’s labor force in October of this year was 3.9% lower compared to the same month in 2019 and the number of people working in non-farm jobs was down 5.2% compared to 2019.

Click here for the full report including the state data.