Three-and-a-Half Percent

  • 05/25/2018
  • Paul Rosenberg

A look behind the shockingly low estimate of how few local residents are employed in port, port-related jobs

By Paul Rosenberg, Senior Editor

According to Raimi + Associates’ analysis of US Census Bureau data from 2010 and 2014, only 3.5 percent of the residents of a Port of Los Angeles adjacent study area have jobs related to the port. There  are 61,315 employed residents and 32,708 jobs in the study area, of which 12,372 are “port or port-related” (37.8 percent, more than one in three jobs). If every one of those jobs was held by someone living in the study area, that would be about 20 percent of the workforce. But only 5,691 people live and work in the study area (17.4 percent of all study area jobs). Assuming that same rate for port-related jobs, there would be 2,153 of them (12,372 times 17.4 percent) held by study area residents, which is 3.5 percent.

There could be more.

“Even if you’re working in the Wilmington area, their job, their paycheck might be coming from San Bernardino,” Raimi project director Beth Altshuler explained.

So, they would not be classified as working within the study area, making the 3.5 percent figure too low.

“A lot of them [in these jobs] are coming from close by, like in Long Beach or Rancho Palos Verdes, or Carson [adjacent to the study area], but that’s not Wilmington or San Pedro, which are the neighborhoods experiencing the brunt of the impacts,” she said. “So some of them do live within a 20-minute drive, a lot of them probably do, but they’re not the ones who were listening to trains go by 24-7, seeing the lights from the cranes 24-7, in the water, having the beautiful ocean views ruined by ships.”

Even that 3.5 percent may be too high for the communities and neighborhoods being impacted most.

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