The local employment situation worsened last month, despite a very slight improvement in the overall jobs picture across the country.

Statistics Canada releasing the jobs numbers for June as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be a major factor on the labour market. The agency says the Lethbridge-Medicine Hat jobless rate increased to 9.8% up from 9.0% in May. Even with that jump, this region still has the lowest jobless rate in the province.

Alberta’s rate stayed the same at 15.5%, unchanged from May. The Banff, Jasper, and Grande Prairie areas have the highest unemployment in the province at 16.5%, followed by the Edmonton region at 15.8%.

The data released Friday morning (July 10) shows from coast to coast, the pandemic has started to ease its grip on the country with most provinces seeing some improvement in employment.

When it comes to the country as a whole, Canada’s jobless rate fell to 12.3% in June, down from the record-high of 13.7% in May There were still 2.5 million Canadians out of work last month, but that’s an improvement of more than half when 5.5 million people were sitting without jobs between March and April.

Alberta Jobless Rate by Region June 2020

Lethbridge-Medicine Hat: 9.8%
Camrose-Drumheller: 12.8%
Calgary: 15.0%
Banff-Jasper-Rocky Mountain House: 16.5%
Athabasca-Grande Prairie-Peace River: 16.5%
Red Deer: 13.4%
Edmonton: 15.8%
Wood Buffalo-Cold Lake: 11.6%