Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis issued the following statement on the September 2011 Employment Situation report released today:
"Our nation's labor market posted growth in the month of September. Nonfarm payroll employment added 137,000 private sector jobs, exceeding expectations, and total nonfarm payroll jobs grew by 103,000. Additionally, the reported July and August jobs numbers were revised significantly upward, meaning that we added 99,000 more jobs during those two months than previously was reported. The unemployment rate remained at 9.1 percent.
"I am encouraged by much of the recent data we're seeing, but we know more must be done to speed our recovery. Second quarter gross domestic product growth was revised up, building permits were up, industrial production was up, export growth was up, consumer confidence was up, and personal spending was up. What this shows is that our economy responds positively when Washington curtails the public bickering and pledges to work together to solve the jobs crisis. If we want these trends to continue, our lawmakers must now match their words with votes.
"We've now created 2.6 million jobs over 19 consecutive months of private sector growth. The policies this administration has pursued have added jobs back into the economy, but we need them to work faster and on an even bigger scale. We know what works: cutting payroll taxes for workers and businesses, extending unemployment insurance benefits and making smart investments in the American worker. Now is not the time to abandon these proven pro-growth policies.
"In September, we saw 34,000 local government workers lose their jobs, including 24,000 teachers and other education professionals. The American Jobs Act will stop these losses and give municipalities the support they need to put our educators back in the classroom. Giving our youth a first-class education is critical to our long-term success in the global economy.
"Independent forecasters estimate that the American Jobs Act will create as many as 1.9 million jobs and increase economic growth by as much as two percentage points, if enacted. That's more than 150,000 additional jobs a month. It's crucial that this bill gets an up-or-down vote in both the House and Senate. If leaders in Congress refuse to put the bill to a vote, respected forecasters believe we will see lackluster GDP and job growth in 2012. Inaction is not a responsible option for any lawmaker who is serious about putting this country back to work."