Not all of us are lucky enough to shelter in place. Which cities have the most essential workers?

The United States has had to implement severe social distancing measures, closing down office buildings across the country and forcing the majority of Americans to work from home. However, there remain plenty of employed citizens who have been deemed “essential workers” due to the services they provide or the industries they work in. These people continue to travel to work each day, supporting fellow workers who enjoy the convenience of working from home for the foreseeable future.

Interested in learning more about essential workers in the United States, data scientists from Insurify dove into the numbers and compiled a list of cities across the country with the highest proportion of employees that continue to commute to work each day. Here are the top 20.

Insights

  • National averages: In total, 14.23 percent of workers across the country have an “essential job”. Additionally, the average population of the 20 cities on the list is 19,641. Lastly, in 2015 health and social services was the major industry with the most employees in 33 of 50 states. Retail trade and manufacturing each employed the most workers in seven states, while the accommodation and food services industry employed the most workers in three states.
  • Small cities are essential: Large metropolitan areas are hotbeds for white collar and technical jobs which can more easily be done from home, whereas smaller cities have a larger share of citizens whose professions are taking them out of the house even during stay-at-home advisories. None of the cities in the top 20 are among the United States’ 200 most populous. In fact, none of the cities on the list have a population greater than 50,000.
  • A country-wide spread: People work essential occupations all over the country—they are dubbed “essential” for a reason, after all—and that is reflected in our top 20. Cities in states from both coasts, the Midwest, the South, and the Northeast make an appearance on the list.

 

Methodology

To determine which cities in the United States have the highest populations of essential workers, the research team at Insurify took a look at its database of over two million car insurance applications, which includes current occupation. To determine which jobs were deemed essential, a list of 70 different professions from 16 different infrastructure sectors that were classified as vital to the U.S. according to the Department of Homeland Security (D.H.S.) was then compiled. The number of workers with one of these 70-plus occupations was then compared against the total number of workers in each city, and the city with the highest proportion of essential workers in each state was then selected. The top 20 are listed below.

Additional data on the total population of each city comes from the United States Census Bureau, while information on the major industry in each state with the highest employment comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

 

Cities With the Most Essential Workers

 

20. Gaylord, Michigan

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 15.04%
  • Population (2018): 3,701
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Manufacturing

19. Box Elder, South Dakota

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 15.09%
  • Population (2018): 9,800
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

18. Greensburg, Kentucky

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 15.24%
  • Population (2018): 2,095
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Manufacturing

17. Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 15.43%
  • Population (2018): 42,959
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Manufacturing

16. Spanish Fork, Utah

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 15.53%
  • Population (2018): 39,961
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Retail trade

15. Bonifay, Florida

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 15.53%
  • Population (2018): 2,962
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Retail trade

14. Oak Harbor, Washington

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 15.74%
  • Population (2018): 23,401
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

13. Monroeville, Alabama

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 15.93%
  • Population (2018): 5,850
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Manufacturing

12. Tinley Park, Illinois

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 16.06%
  • Population (2018): 56,204
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

11. Havelock, North Carolina

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 16.2%
  • Population (2018): 20,232
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Retail trade

10. Kuna, Idaho

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 16.31%
  • Population (2018): 20,746
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

9. Mustang, Oklahoma

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 16.67%
  • Population (2018): 21,997
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

8. Johnston, Rhode Island

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 17.44%
  • Population (2018): 29,322
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

7. Ironton, Ohio

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 18%
  • Population (2018): 10,635
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

6. Artesia, New Mexico

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 18.46%
  • Population (2018): 12,268
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

5. Sanger, Texas

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 18.67%
  • Population (2018): 8,540
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

4. Twentynine Palms, California

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 20.07%
  • Population (2018): 26,418
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

3. Brooklet, Georgia

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 20.18%
  • Population (2018): 1,706
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Retail trade

2. Gillette, Wyoming

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 20.64%
  • Population (2018): 31,903
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Accomodation and food services

1. Junction City, Kansas

  • Percentage of drivers with essential jobs: 22.75%
  • Population (2018): 22,120
  • Major industry with highest employment statewide (2015): Health care and social assistance

If you have questions or comments about this article, please contact insights@insurify.com..