Florida had the second highest number of mass layoff actions in the nation during the month of August, according to a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics summary released today.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics explains that “each mass layoff involved at least 50 workers from a single employer.” Florida, with 78 mass layoffs (not seasonally adjusted), came in second. California was first with 251, and New York third with 71. The good news is that the number of mass layoffs in Florida during August dropped well below June and July levels.

At the national level, employers took 1,587 seasonally adjusted mass layoff actions, involving more than 165,000 workers.

Last week, the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that Florida was among the four states with the largest over-the-month increase in employment during August.

The release added that “the largest over-the-month increase in employment occurred in Minnesota (+28,400), followed by North Carolina (+16,500), Arizona (+15,400), and Florida (+9,900).”

A report on the “State of Working Florida 2011″ issued by the Research Institute on Social and Economic Policy (aka RISEP) at Florida International University on Labor Day states that “more than two years after the official end of the recession, the path to recovery is not yet clear in Florida or the nation.”

According to the RISEP report, “in the last six months unemployment has come down to 10.7% and 64,300 jobs have been added,” but job growth has been “concentrated in a few industries, particularly Health Care and Social Assistance, Accommodation and Food Services, and Administrative and Waste services. In July the state lost 22,000 jobs, mostly due to losses in local government including public schools.”

From the report:

While higher educated workers in higher paying jobs appear to be doing fairly well and even gaining ground in wages, lower educated workers, African American workers, and young workers, are still facing extremely high unemployment rates and wage decreases. As many economists and advocates have noted recently, this crisis continues absent meaningful action at the federal level to create jobs.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics updates come just weeks after the U.S. Census Bureau reported that 46.2 million people live in poverty in the U.S., the fourth consecutive annual increase and the largest number in the 52 years for which poverty estimates have been published.

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