MassFiscal Responds to Pioneer Study Showing Blue-Collar Workers Hit Hardest

32% Unemployment in Food and Accommodations Sector

Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance made the following statement today in response to today’s release of a Pioneer Institute study that shows the breakdown of unemployment claims categorized by industry across the state. The study, authored by Greg Sullivan and Rebekah Paxton shows that the “Food and Accommodations” industry were hit the hardest with 100,083 filing for unemployment. This accounts for approximately 32 percent of the 313,919 total jobs in that category. The study is available on the Pioneer Institute’s website.


“Many of our state’s blue-collar workers are being hit the hardest by the government’s economic policies associated with social distancing. The Pioneer study shows that over 100,000 blue collar workers, who only a few weeks ago were hard at work, have filed for unemployment. Nearly 32 percent of the industry is not working, and this will only continue to get worse.  Our State House leaders need to begin to talk about a plan to safely allow for these workers to get back on the job, and give certainty to small business owners,” stated Paul D. Craney, spokesperson for Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance.


The study’s second hardest hit category was retail, followed by health & social assistance, and construction. Together, they comprise approximately 287,683 of Massachusetts total jobs according to records associated with unemployment claims.


“Massachusetts State House leaders need to understand that most of these blue-collar jobs require being physically present at their work sites. They cannot Zoom into their workday. Working from home means they are out of work. They don’t have the same job security as highly paid lawmakers do, or the benefits and automatic pay raises that rank and file lawmakers enjoy. Many of these blue-collar workers work paycheck to paycheck to make ends meet,” concluded Craney.

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