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Friday, October 28, 2011

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Occupational Employment and Wages for Selected Social Worker Occupations in Kentucky's Metropolitan Areas – May 2010


Among the nine metropolitan areas in Kentucky in May 2010, all except Huntington-Ashland reported average annual wages significantly below the nation for healthcare social workers, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Likewise, all areas except Louisville-Jefferson County had wages for mental health and substance abuse workers that were significantly below the national average. Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that all nine areas had below average wages for child, family, and school social workers. Nationwide, the average annual wage for child, family, and school social workers was $43,850, while healthcare social workers earned $49,200 and mental health and substance abuse social workers earned $41,880. (See table A. For comprehensive definitions of metropolitan areas in Kentucky, please see Technical Note.)

Table A. Average (mean) annual wages for selected social worker occupations in the United States and metropolitan areas in Kentucky, May 2010
Area Child, family, and school social workers Healthcare social workers Mental health and substance abuse social workers

United States

$43,850 $49,200 $41,880

Kentucky

37300* 42590* 36500*

Bowling Green

35450* 41900* 34500*

Cincinnati-Middletown, Ohio-Ky.-Ind.

37090* 46530* 36270*

Clarksville, Tenn.-Ky.

34360* 31610* 37550*

Elizabethtown

34200* -- --

Evansville, Ind.-Ky.

34360* 37990* 32230*

Huntington-Ashland, W. Va.-Ky.-Ohio

33140* 48860* 29630*

Lexington-Fayette

38530* 43810* 33120*

Louisville-Jefferson County, Ky.-Ind.

37770* 44900* 40,510

Owensboro

40410* 39240* --

Footnotes:
(*) The mean annual wage for this area is significantly different from the national average of all areas at the 90-percent confidence level.

-- Estimate not released.


Of the nine metropolitan areas located entirely or partially in the state, Cincinnati-Middletown had the largest number of child, family, and school social workers (2,290), healthcare social workers (950), and mental health and substance abuse social workers (1,170). Cincinnati-Middletown accounted for roughly 42 percent of Kentucky’s employment in these three occupations. Louisville-Jefferson County had 2,530 jobs, or about 24 percent of all jobs in the state’s employment in these three occupations combined. Lexington-Fayette (1,480) was the only other metropolitan area where combined employment in the three selected occupations exceeded 1,000. (See table B.)

Table B. Employment for selected social worker occupations in the United States and metropolitan areas in Kentucky, May 2010
Area Child, family, and school social workers Healthcare social workers Mental health and substance abuse social workers

United States

276,100 143,080 119,960

Kentucky

7,650 1,410 1,510

Bowling Green

230 60 --

Cincinnati-Middletown, Ohio-Ky.-Ind.

2,290 950 1,170

Clarksville, Tenn.-Ky.

290 40 90

Elizabethtown

-- -- --

Evansville, Ind.-Ky.

350 180 230

Huntington-Ashland, W. Va.-Ky.-Ohio

400 150 210

Lexington-Fayette

980 230 270

Louisville-Jefferson County, Ky.-Ind.

1,610 460 460

Owensboro

270 40 --
-- Estimate not released.

Wages for child, family, and school social workers in metropolitan areas in Kentucky

Owensboro was the highest-paying metropolitan area in Kentucky for child, family, and school social workers at $40,410, significantly below the national average. The mean annual wages in all nine of Kentucky’s metropolitan areas were significantly lower than the nation. Huntington-Ashland ($33,140) registered the lowest wage in this occupation, more than $10,000 below the national average. The metropolitan areas with below-average wages for child, family, and school social workers were not concentrated geographically in any part of the state. (See chart 1.)


Chart 1. Mean annual wages for child, family, and school social workers by area, Kentucky, May 2010


Wages for healthcare social workers in metropolitan areas in Kentucky

The Huntington-Ashland metropolitan area paid the highest annual wage ($48,860) in the state for healthcare social workers, followed by Cincinnati-Middletown ($46,530). Huntington-Ashland was the only metropolitan area in Kentucky with a wage not measurably different than the national average, while seven other areas had below average wages for this occupation. At the bottom of the wage scale, healthcare social workers in Clarksville were paid $31,610 annually, nearly $18,000 below the national average. For healthcare social workers, the metropolitan areas with below-average wages were spread geographically throughout the state. (See chart 2.)


Chart 2. Mean annual wages for healthcare social workers by area, Kentucky, May 2010


Wages for mental health and substance abuse social workers in metropolitan areas in Kentucky

At $40,510, Louisville-Jefferson County was the highest-paying metropolitan area in Kentucky for mental health and substance abuse social workers and the only metropolitan area in the state not measurably different from the national average. Two other areas, Clarksville ($37,550) and Cincinnati-Middletown (36,270), had annual mean wages above $35,000. Mental health and substance abuse social workers in Huntington-Ashland were paid the least among the metropolitan areas in the state at $29,630. The metropolitan areas with mental health and substance abuse social workers recording wages below the national average were spread geographically throughout the state. (See chart 3.)


Chart 3. Mean annual wages for mental health and substance abuse social workers by area, Kentucky, May 2010


These statistics are from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey, a federal-state cooperative program between the BLS and state Workforce Agencies, in this case, the Department of Workforce Investment in Kentucky. The OES survey provides estimates of employment and hourly and annual wages for wage and salary workers in 22 major occupational groups and nearly 800 non-military detailed occupations for the nation, states, metropolitan statistical areas, metropolitan divisions, and nonmetropolitan areas.

OES wage and employment data for selected social workers in the state and metropolitan areas were compared to their respective national averages based on statistical significance testing. Only those occupations with wages or employment shares above or below the national wage or share after testing for significance at the 90-percent confidence level meet the criteria.

NOTE: A value that is statistically different from another does not necessarily mean that the difference has economic or practical significance. Statistical significance is concerned with the ability to make confident statements about a universe based on a sample. It is entirely possible that a large difference between values is not significantly different statistically, while a small difference is, since both the size and heterogeneity of the sample affect the relative error of the data being tested.

Technical Note

The Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey is a semiannual mail survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. OES estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.2 million establishments. Forms are mailed to approximately 200,000 establishments in May and November of each year for a 3-year period. The nationwide response rate for the May 2010 estimates was 78.2 percent based on establishments and 74.4 percent based on employment. May 2010 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual periods collected over a 3-year period: May 2010, November 2009, May 2009, November 2008, May 2008, and November 2007. For more information about OES concepts and methodology, go to www.bls.gov/news.release/ocwage.tn.htm.

The May 2010 OES estimates mark the first set of estimates based in part on data collected using the 2010 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system. Nearly all the occupations in this release are 2010 SOC occupations; however, some are not. The May 2012 OES data will reflect the full set of detailed occupations in the 2010 SOC. For a list of all occupations, including 2010 SOC occupations, and how data are collected on two structures were combined, see the OES Frequently Asked Questions online at www.bls.gov/oes/oes_ques.htm#Ques41.

OES data by state and metropolitan/nonmetropolitan area are available from www.bls.gov/oes/current/oessrcst.htm and www.bls.gov/oes/current/oessrcma.htm, respectively.

Metropolitan area definitions

The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

Bowling Green, Ky. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Edmonson and Warren Counties in Kentucky.

Cincinnati-Middletown, Ohio-Ky.-Ind. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Brown, Butler, Clermont, Hamilton, and Warren Counties in Ohio; Boone, Bracken, Campbell, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, and Pendleton Counties in Kentucky; and Dearborn, Franklin, and Ohio Counties in Indiana.

Clarksville, Tenn.-Ky. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Montgomery and Stewart Counties in Tennessee and Christian and Trigg Counties in Kentucky.

Elizabethtown, Ky. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Hardin and Larue Counties in Kentucky.

Evansville, Ind.-Ky. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Gibson, Posey, Vanderburgh, and Warrick Counties in Indiana and Henderson and Webster Counties in Kentucky.

Huntington-Ashland, W. Va.-Ky.-Ohio Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Cabell and Wayne Counties in West Virginia; Boyd and Greenup Counties in Kentucky; and Lawrence County in Ohio.

Lexington-Fayette Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Bourbon, Clark, Fayette, Jessamine, Scott, and Woodford Counties in Kentucky.

Louisville-Jefferson County, Ky.-Ind. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Bullitt, Henry, Jefferson, Meade, Nelson, Oldham, Shelby, Spencer, and Trimble Counties in Kentucky and Clark, Floyd, Harrison, and Washington Counties in Indiana.

Owensboro, Ky. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Daviess, Hancock, and McLean Counties in Kentucky.

Additional information

OES data are available on the Southeast regional web page at www.bls.gov/ro4/home.htm. If you have additional questions, contact the Southeast Economic Analysis and Information Office at 404-893-4222 during the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. ET. Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: 202-691-5200; TDD message referral phone number: 1-800-877-8339.

Last Modified Date: October 28, 2011