Lancaster Independent Press
RSS icon Home icon

    Posted on August 7th, 2017 Becky 11 comments


    A screenshot of today’s LNP editorial online (click here). This is completely incorrect information.

         It took me a lot longer than you might think to find the 5.8% unemployment rate for the city of Lancaster in June of 2017 according to the PA Department of Labor. I had to call several people and finally got an exceptionally knowledgeable man at the Department of Labor. He said there are no other valid rates published anywhere else for Lancaster and that the city is such a small population group that the statistics are in a sub-group of statistics and not part of the department’s main data output.
         I told him that the Lancaster Newspapers were stating 13.9 percent and he noticed that is the figure for the labor force in East Hempfield Township immediately above the city in the chart below and said maybe that is where they got the number.
         I don’t know where they came up with 13.9 percent for the city and further, 14.7 percent for the southwest part of the city, but neither is close to being valid.
         I knew something was wrong immediately when I read it this morning. How could this have gotten by all those editors? And if this didn’t strike at least one person as wrong, how can we possibly believe anything they say in the editorial about Lancaster’s fiscal situation?
         This is a glaring, embarrassing and totally misleading error and LNP needs to make a correction now.
    There will be more tomorrow.



         Lancaster city’s unemployment rate is 5.8 percent (see below and click here for the original data – on page 10 for the June 2017 rates). The Lancaster Newspapers are completely wrong and need to issue a correction now.


    ***   To clarify, Dr. Ken Smith, the Department Chair of the Economics Department at Millersville University, is quoted below (click here). Thank you very much for speaking with me.

    **   Ken Smith of the Millersville University Economics Department said by phone this morning that he can not imagine where LNP got the 13.9 percent unemployment rate for the city of Lancaster they used in today’s editorial.
         He said the US Department of Labor figures are for Lancaster County and said he can’t imagine that the county could be that low (4.1 percent) and the city that high (13.9 percent according to LNP).
         He said it was a “good question” where LNP got their figures.
         LNP needs to clarify their editorial and state where the 13.9 and 14.7 percent figures they quote come from or make a correction to their editorial now.


    *    Where is LNP getting their statistics? Not from the U.S. Department of Labor. They say Lancaster’s unemployment rate is 4.1 percent (click here and see below)! Has someone at LNP been drinking again?


         The city’s overall unemployment rate is 13.9 percent. Unemployment in the Southwest is 14.7 percent.
         These numbers are all too high, especially when you consider, for example, that the unemployment rate for the nation is 4.3 percent.
    From today’s LNP editorial, “Lancaster should be congratulated for getting its fiscal house in order,” (click here).
         Are these numbers correct? How is that possible? The national unemployment rate is 4.3 percent but in the city it’s 13.9 percent? What the hell is going on?
    Please check back later today.



    1. You must thrive on looking stupid! The chart clearly shows the unemployment rate at 4.1%. A simple Google search will explain the difference between unemployed and the unemployment rate.

    2. Well, I did what you suggested and found this. So what is your point?

      There is only one official definition of unemployment—people who are jobless, actively seeking work, and available to take a job, as discussed above. The official unemployment rate for the nation is the number of unemployed as a percentage of the labor force (the sum of the employed and unemployed).

      unemployed and the unemployment rate

    3. I would bet that the figures were in a news release from Smucker or some other rep or Senator.

    4. But but but Becky, with an unemployment rate that is not much lower than the national unemployment rate, how would all the good Christians be able to continue to prop up their disdain and disgust for “those people” who live in the city?

    5. LNP is a major ass kisser of the Dick, so I’m left to wonder. What’s the motive behind lying about a high unemployment rate when the facts show a low unemployment rate?

    6. You know, it’s really sad that day after day after day this newspaper prints untruth after mistake after error. And unless threatened to be sued I imagine, they never correct their errors.

    7. Lousy News Paper is nothing other than the propaganda rag for the Con Center and other Dale High/PSP interests.

    8. I believe the statistics used in the article may have come from the American Community Survey. Not long ago, a study on poverty was done in Lancaster and I believe the 13.9% figure was taken at the time from a census done for the time period of 2010-2014 (most recent available at the time). The 2015 figure provided by ACS shows 12.8% for Lancaster City. Census figures come from FactFinder on the website.

    9. Anonymous: who are we to believe?

    10. huh? – I am trying to get answers and will address this shortly. Everyone I spoke to on Monday said 13.9 percent was an outrageous figure.

    11. Its not about who to believe….none of them are trying to be misleading…it is about recognizing the way each source compiles there data and the limitations in each of their procedures. Here is a helpful link:

      Similar explanations can be found on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ website.