The U.S. Labor Secretary is blaming COVID for the latest disappointing jobs report. Marty Walsh stressed that the U.S. is “still dealing with a pandemic,” noting the rise of the Delta variant. Walsh’s comments come after the Labor Department reported the economy added only 194-thousand jobs last month, well below the projected estimate of 475-thousand. Walsh noted just two months ago, they thought the extended 300-dollar weekly unemployment benefit was keeping people from getting back to work, but said “that clearly wasn’t the case.” He explained if it was true, we would have seen it reflected in the latest jobs report. The secretary added his department still has work to do, “no question about it.”
Walsh said in order to move forward, “more people need to get vaccinated” and the U.S. needs to see more “participation in the workplace.” He noted the nation has added nearly five-million jobs since President Biden took office. Walsh pointed out the unemployment rate has also dropped below five-percent.