State of Working X

Similar to the Economic Policy Institute’s State of Working America, the State of Working XX (SWXX) is a series of reports produced by state EARN groups describing the economic conditions for working families in their state. SWXX reports provide a comprehensive description of state economic conditions, often with a focus on labor market conditions. SWXX reports provide data and analysis on job growth, unemployment, wages, incomes, poverty rates, taxes, wealth, immigration, and other issue areas relevant to current state economic conditions and policy discussions. Many SWXX reports also include tailored and timely policy recommendations for strengthening economic conditions for workers in each state.

Publications

Publication

Data for the People

All Oregonians deserve to live in dignity — to enjoy economic security and the possibility to thrive. This is doable. Oregon, after all, is a prosperous place, with enough resources for everyone to live well.

But for a vast number of Oregonians today, economic security feels like an impossible dream. At a time when the income of the richest Oregonians has reached record highs, many low-paid Oregonians can’t afford basic necessities such as food, housing, and health care. Economic insecurity afflicts Oregonians of all races. As a result of an economy designed to benefit the white and wealthy, it is especially pronounced among Black, Indigenous and other Oregonians of color.

Data for the People provides the latest publicly-available data on the economic well-being of Oregonians. To better reflect the realities of particular communities, wherever possible we break down data by race and ethnicity using Race, Ethnicity, Language, and Disability (REAL-D) categories developed by the Oregon Health Authority (OHA). For more information about this process, as well as data sources used throughout, see our detailed methodology.

The data make clear the need for Oregon to create an economy that is more equitable in its prosperity. OCPP’s Action Plan for the People lays out a policy roadmap to shift the economic system to benefit all Oregonians, not just the wealthy few. We invite you to explore this data set.

Publication

The State of Working Connecticut

Similar to the recoveries from the past three recessions, Connecticut’s job recovery from the pandemic-induced recession of 2020 continues to lag the job recovery for the U.S. as a whole. Specifically, as of July 2022—the most recent month data are available—Connecticut is on track to close its job shortfall in June 2023, nearly a year after the U.S., which already closed its job shortfall. The other major dynamic in the labor market during the ongoing recovery is that wage growth for low- and middle-wage workers in Connecticut has outpaced wage growth for low- and middle-wage workers in the U.S. and it has also outpaced wage growth for high-wage workers in both the U.S. and Connecticut. This exceptional wage growth dynamic is helping to reduce wage inequality and raise the standard of living for low- and middle-wage workers in Connecticut, especially low-wage workers. At the same time, the slower job recovery is contributing to a slower economic recovery more broadly that is limiting the tax revenue available to establish a permanent, fair tax system and make sustained, critical investments, both of which are essential for further raising the standard of living for low- and middle-wage workers.

The purpose of Connecticut Voices for Children’s (CT Voices’) annual State of Working Connecticut report is to provide a detailed overview of Connecticut’s labor market and occasionally to dive deeper into the status of certain workers. The report proceeds in three sections. The first section provides an overview of Connecticut’s employment situation, which relies in part on new, detailed employment measures calculated by the authors. The second section provides an overview of Connecticut’s wage growth, inequality, and gaps, which relies in part on new, detailed wage measures calculated by the authors. The third section provides policy recommendations to address issues with Connecticut’s employment situation and its wage growth, inequality, and gaps.

 

Publication

The State of Working Kentucky 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing economic downturn reshaped Kentucky’s economy in ways that are still revealing themselves thirty months after the virus arrived in the commonwealth. Part of the story is good news for workers. Aggressive federal pandemic aid has stimulated a record fast recovery and a tight labor market that have begun to drive up wages, increase job opportunities and accelerate unionization efforts. This progress is much needed after years of eroding job quality and stagnant wages.

Publication

Utah Economic Benchmarking Project 2022: Utah vs Texas

Voices for Utah Children released today the fifth in its series of economic benchmarking reports that evaluate how the Utah economy is experienced by median- and lower-income families by benchmarking Utah against another state.  This year’s report, authored by Taylor Throne and Matthew Weinstein with support from intern Bryce Fairbanks from the University of Utah Department of Economics, compares Utah to Texas.  While the Economic Opportunity benchmarks come out nearly even, with Utah ahead in 11 and Texas ahead in 8, in the Standard of Living category Utah predominates in 20 categories and Texas in just two.