An official City of Windsor welcome sign is photographed on northbound Walker Road near the 401 on March 7, 2016.

Nearly Half Of Windsor-Essex Doesn’t Work

Statistics Canada says the Windsor area still has one of the lowest employment rates in Canada.

The 2016 census shows only 55.3% of people in the Windsor area had jobs, which is the third worst in the country.  Stats Canada says the areas with the lowest employment rates have an older population base and a weaker manufacturing sector.

Essex County Warden Tom Bain agrees and says Windsor-Essex has a lot of retirees, with more moving to the area every day.

“We have a large number of retirees that are coming in from the Greater Toronto area, selling their homes there and buying and retiring here in Windsor-Essex,” says Bain.

Windsor is tied with Peterborough and just above Trois-Rivieres and Saguenay despite area unemployment rates drastically dropping over the last several years.  Windsor’s jobless rate was at just over 9% a few years ago but fell to 5.2% in June of this year and has jumped again to 6.9% in October.

Bain thinks the current job numbers haven’t caught up with Stats Canada yet and hopes they will be reflected in next year’s census.

“There are more people out there working today. If you went back ten years ago, you never saw signs in the window saying ‘Help Wanted’. You have that now,” the Warden says.

Bain believes there’s enough work being done to create jobs and train more skilled workers.

“We’re just beginning to see some of the results from those new programs and they’ll be continuing working together [UWindsor & St. Clair College]. The way you see it now is starting to reap benefits for us,” Bain says.

Canada’s employment rate was 60.2% in 2016, down from 62.6% in May of 2006.