Survey: More than 4 in 10 Detroiters have lost jobs during COVID-19 pandemic

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Posted at 9:05 AM, May 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-26 09:05:15-04

DETROIT (WXYZ) — Forty-three percent of Detroiters have lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new University of Michigan survey.

The survey was open from April 23 to May 7.

"We found that job losses were especially prevalent among people who were earning less income before the pandemic, people with less education and people of color," said Jeffrey Morenoff, one of the faculty research leads for UM's Detroit Metro Area Communities Study, professor of sociology and director of the Population Studies Center at U-M's Institute for Social Research.

"Even among Detroiters who are still working, 27% said their hours have been reduced since the pandemic. This loss of income takes a significant toll on people's long-term financial security."

The survey results suggest the unemployment rate in Detroit is now twice the statewide unemployment rate and more than three times the U.S. unemployment rate.

"While these job losses are staggering, we likely won't know the full weight of the pandemic for some time. Two-thirds of those newly unemployed report that they have been temporarily laid off or furloughed from their jobs, but only time will tell if their positions and their employers actually come back," said Lydia Wileden, a doctoral candidate at U-M who analyzed the DMACS COVID-19 survey data.

Of the Detroiters who are still working, 43% primarily work outside their homes, 42% primarily work from home and 15% split their time between working from home and outside their homes.

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