PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) - Rhode Island's percentage of ‘underemployed' is the third highest in the country and significantly higher than neighboring Connecticut and Massachusetts according to statistics released by the U.S. Department of Labor.
18.9 percent of the Rhode Island work force is either jobless or working part time while needing to work full time. The Department of Labor lists the state's unemployment rate at 11.2 percent which is second highest in the country, behind only Nevada. Nevada's underemployment rate of 22.1 percent is also the country's highest.
The Massachusetts' underemployment rate is pegged at 13.5 percent, while Connecticut is said to have an underemployment rate of 14.5 percent. Both of those rates are lower than the nation's rate of 15.3 percent.
National unemployment was 8.3 percent according to the July statistics released on Friday.
Rhode Island is also home to two other negative distinctions. The Ocean State is the only state where the underemployment rate rose from the end of last year, climbing slightly from 18.6 percent. And 7 percent of Rhode Island workers have been out of work for more than 15 weeks, the second highest percentage in the country in that dismal category.
Neither the unemployment nor underemployment rates include workers who have given up and stopped looking for jobs.