Evanston’s jobless rate declined from 7.6 to 7.3 percent last month — but more people stopped looking for work than found new jobs.

New figures from the Illinois Department of Employment Security show 111 Evanstonians either moved out of town or stopped looking for work in October, while there was a net increase of 45 people with jobs.

That left 3,113 people unemployed in a local labor force of 42,626.

A year ago Evanston’s jobless rate stood at 7.9 percent.

The decline in Evanston’s unemployment rate last month lagged improvements shown in several other communities around the state.

Evanston, which had a lower unemployment rate than all but nine of the nearly 100 Illinois cities with more than 25,000 residents as recently as June, was bested by 23 towns in that ranking for October.

Statewide the jobless rate was 9.2 percent last month, compared to 9.5 percent in September and 10.5 percent a year ago.

For the Chicago metro area, the rate was 9.0 percent last month, compared to 9.4 percent in September and 10.3 percent a year ago.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. Evanston IDES Office Closing Next Week

    And to make it even more difficult for the Evanston unemployed, the Evanston Illinois Department of Employment Security office at 1615 Oak will close for good at the end of the day December 3, 2010.

    After that, the nearest unemployment offices will be in Chicago at 2444 W. Lawrence (walking distance from the Ravenswood Metra stop), 4931 W Diversey in Chicago, or in Arlington Heights (723 W Algonquin) or Lombard (837 S Westmore-Meyers Rd).

    1. Thanks Tom for the update.

      Thanks Tom for the update. Too bad, the unemployment office hasn’t sent out notices that they will be moving to another location.

  2. Closing Evanston unemployment office

    Notices were sent just a week ago to the people currently receiving unemployment services. BUT, the big questions are

    "Why was the office closed?" 

    "Why wasn’t this covered in front page news by the Sun-Times and the Tribune?"

    "Did anyone employed at the office lose a job?" 

    "How ill the change of locataion affect Evanstonians who have little money and time for traveling to a Lawrence Avenue location as frequently as they may be required to?" ( Note: the online services are inefficient; you often need to speak to a person in real time to resolve issues that arise, often on a monthly basis, in a timely manner).

    One can assume it’s a cost-cutting measure, but it is hard to avoid the irony of closing a very busy office in the midst of the worst unemployment crisis since the depression. Not to mention, the unemployment number for Evanston quoted in the article may be the official number, but it’s lower than the actual number of unemployed people who reside in the area. For example, many are no longer actively registered as unemployed, although they are not working or are working part time.

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