December 2017

Shortchanged: Underemployment in New York City

How combatting under-employment can buttress low-income workers against economic hardship.

Contributors: Sophie Collyer, Matthew Maury, Christopher Wimer

Poverty Tracker data shows that a large percentage of working-age adults in New York City are underemployed. Many part-time workers express a desire to work more hours if they could, and these workers are substantially more likely than their fully-employed peers to suffer an array of severe material hardships. These results suggest that simply moving more disadvantaged New Yorkers into the labor market will not be enough to eradicate their disadvantages. Adequate wages and ample available job hours must also exist in order for jobs to sufficiently buttress workers against economic hardship.