Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis issued the following statement on the July 2011 Employment Situation report released today:
"Our nation's labor market continued to add jobs in the month of July. The private sector added 154,000 jobs, and total non-farm payrolls rose by 117,000, with a loss of 37,000 government jobs. The unemployment rate ticked down to 9.1 percent.
"This is encouraging news, but it also shows that we need to keep fighting for what we know has worked throughout this recovery. That means extending the payroll tax cuts and continuing to support those who are out of work through no fault of their own by extending federal funding for the unemployment insurance system.
"This month's report shows yet again that private sector job growth faces difficult headwinds, as job losses in state and local governments continue to hold us back. Budget cuts in state and local government have led to the loss of 340,000 jobs in the last 12 months alone.
"Now that Congress has averted a disastrous default and protected programs that millions of American families count on, it's critical that our leaders return their focus to job creation.
"In addition to extending tax cuts for middle class families so they have more money to put back in our economy, Congress should pass a bipartisan infrastructure bill to help re-employ the millions of construction workers who lost their jobs in the housing collapse. And they should expand our trading relationships to boost our exports, while ensuring that Trade Adjustment Assistance is reauthorized to help displaced workers affected by foreign trade.
"These bipartisan ideas to strengthen job growth can and should be enacted immediately. I will work with the White House and Congress to ensure that we are taking the right steps to help put every American who wants a job back to work."