Labor Secretary Hilda Solis released a statement following the release of the March jobs report Friday, saying that the numbers show that we have more work to do.

Earlier in the day, the Labor Department released its monthly jobs report, showing that 663,000 jobs were lost during the month of March. It also showed the unemployment rate at 8.5%.

Today's numbers show that we have more work to do, Solis said.

The Americans who have lost their jobs worry about paying the mortgage, keeping their health insurance and paying tuition.

Families across our country are stressed and hurting, and they are at the center of the administration's efforts to provide real relief and opportunity for the future, Solis added.

She said that, by enacting the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, we have taken an important step to save and create jobs while making important investments for future economic growth.

The (Obama) administration, Solis continued, also has taken important steps to help families struggling to make their mortgage payments, and to get credit flowing for small businesses and families.

Solis said the Labor Department continues to actively support workers during this difficult time by providing billions of dollars to increase the level of unemployment benefits and extend their duration.

She also said the department has provided states with $7 billion in incentives to expand the reach of unemployment insurance and distributed $4 billion to increase the opportunities for workers to receive training.

The magnitude of our economy's problems has touched all of us, Solis said in closing her remarks.

But the president and I firmly believe that this nation has the fortitude, spirit and resources to pull ourselves out of this crisis and allow our country to emerge prosperous and even stronger than before.

For comments and feedback: contact