The national unemployment rate has dropped to 5.9 percent, but that doesn’t mean that there are more teens and young adults in the New Mexico workforce. In fact, that number has been dropping for decades, according to a recent report.
According to the report The State of Working New Mexico, produced by New Mexico Voices for Children, young workers made up 14.5 percent of the New Mexico workforce in 2013. That’s down from 17.3 percent in 1990.
“Due to the recession a lot of good paying jobs went away and did not come back,” Communications Director for New Mexico Voices for Children Sharon Kayne said. “Older workers who have education and skills are ending up having to take jobs that otherwise would go to entry-level kinds of workers.”
College enrollment rates have also begun to fall, the report says. The authors suggest making the lottery scholarship need-based in order to allow more people to go to college, as well as increasing funding for programs that may help young adults get the training and skills they need for jobs in the future.