Descriptive Title: Percent of persons 16 and older in the civilian labor force who are employed

Geographic Unit of Analysis: Census tract

Percent of persons 16 and older in the civilian labor force who are employed (2005-2009)
Neighborhood% employed90% MOE*
Bayview/Hunter's Point 85.8% 5.3%
Bernal Heights 94.3% 2.3%
Castro/Upper Market 95.1% 2.1%
Chinatown 85.3% 8.0%
Excelsior 91.0% 2.6%
Financial District/South Beach 94.3% 12.6%
Glen Park
Golden Gate Park NA NA
Haight Ashbury 95.6% 2.0%
Hayes Valley
Inner Richmond 93.6% 1.8%
Inner Sunset 96.3% 0.6%
Lakeshore 92.3% 3.8%
Lincoln Park
Lone Mountain/USF
Marina 95.2% 2.1%
McLaren Park
Mission 95.0% 1.7%
Mission Bay
Nob Hill 95.9% 2.6%
Noe Valley 94.5% 2.5%
North Beach 95.5% 3.3%
Outer Mission 95.0% 1.5%
Outer Richmond 93.1% 2.1%
Pacific Heights 96.1% 1.7%
Potrero Hill 90.7% 4.7%
Presidio 96.8% 2.5%
Presidio Heights 96.3% 3.0%
Russian Hill 91.9% 3.3%
San Francisco 93.4% 0.5%
Seacliff 96.0% 13.2%
South of Market 94.2% 2.6%
Treasure Island 84.1% 15.6%
Twin Peaks 92.4% 19.1%
Visitacion Valley 89.2% 5.8%
West of Twin Peaks 95.3% 2.1%
Western Addition 93.5% 2.0%


For this indicator, the employment rate, rather than the unemployment rate, was calculated becuase figures for unemployment were statistically unreliable. This is because a relatively small number of people are unemployed versus employed, and it is generally difficult to generate reliable estimates for small populations from sample surveys like the American Community Survey (ACS).

According to the ACS, civilians 16 years old and over are classified as employed if they are either (1) "at work," that is, they did any work at all during the reference week as paid employees, worked in their own business or profession, worked on their own farm, or worked 15 hours or more as an unpaid worker on a family farm or in a family business; or (2) were "with a job but not at work", that is, they did not work during the reference week but had jobs or businesses from which they were temporarily absent due to illness, bad weather, industrial dispute, vacation, or other personal reasons. Excluded from the employed are people whose only activity consisted of work around the house or unpaid volunteer work for religious, charitable, and similar organizations; also excluded are all institutionalized people and people on active duty in the United States Armed Forces.

The equation used to calculate the employment rate is therefore: (persons 16+ years old in the civilian labor force and employed) / (persons 16+ years old in the civilian labor force).

Because data for the ACS are collected continuously over a five year period, this indicator does not describe the employment rate at a single point in time. The current economic crisis began in late 2008 and thus, ACS data spanning 2005-2009 likely underestimate the true impact of unemployment in San Francisco. November of 2005-2007, unemployment rates in San Francisco were below 5%, while in 2008-2009 they were 6% and 9.2%.  As of November 2011, San Francisco's unemployment rate was 7.8%.  The state unemployment rate in November of 2011 was listed as 10.9%, which is also lower than the previous two years (

The ACS is a sample survey, and thus, data are estimates rather than counts. Estimates have accompanying margins of error that indicate the span of values that the true value could fall within. Margins of error should be subtracted from and added to the value to determine the range of possible values. If the margin of error is too big relative to the value, data are not shown because they are statisitcally unstable. A coefficient of variation of 30% was used to determine statistical instability.

Data Source

American Community Survey (ACS), 5-year Estimates, 2005-2009.

Map and table created by San Francisco Department of Public Health, Environmental Health Section using ArcGIS software.

Map data is presented at the level of the census tract. The map also includes planning neighborhood names, in the vicinity of their corresponding census tracts.

Table data is presented by planning neighborhood. Planning neighborhoods are larger geographic areas than census tracts. SFDPH chose to use the San Francisco Planning Department's census tract neighborhood assignments to calculate neighborhood values. This assignment method relies on a 'centroids within' methodology to convert census tracts to geographic mean center points. Census tracts are assigned to planning neighborhoods based on the spatial location of those geographic mean center points and neighborhood totals are calculated for the table. In a few case, certain census tracts were redesignated to different neighborhoods based on knowledge of the population dispersion in the tract.

Detailed information regarding census data, geographic units of analysis, their definitions, and their boundaries can be found in the SCI at the following links: