The District can, we believe, do a better job in creating jobs and in helping District residents get ready to fill existing and new jobs. According to the figures provided by the DC Department of Employment Services (DOES) and the U.S. Department of Labor, the current number of jobs in the District of Columbia is 730,300. Unemployment rates for D.C. residents vary widely by Ward, from a low of 2.2% in Ward 3 to a high of 21.6% in Ward 8; creating vast discrepancies across the District. Where previously the District had maintained a healthy construction industry, construction has slowed and growth has shifted into professional and business services jobs for which a large number of District residents are unprepared. Today, over 66% of jobs advertised in D.C. require a Bachelor's degree or higher.
There exists a strong need to connect more employers with local job seekers, as well as to ensure that more D.C. residents qualify for new and existing positions. Historically, job seekers were directed to job training based on the availability of the training program, rather than the need for the skill in the municipality. As the District reorients training to meet requirements for positions and to meet the needs of employers, the FCC is assisting by bringing the expertise and knowledge of its members to the table. To help increase the number of D.C. residents who qualify and receive jobs, the Federal City Council plans to focus on increasing total jobs by supporting the growth of tourism to the District, and by expanding the work of the Workforce Investment Coalition.