Thursday, June 13, 2019

Stone Setter and the Existence of Sedentary Unskilled Work

A recent question posed inquired whether 16,000 jobs as a stone setter represented a significant number of jobs in the national economy.  When an ALJ makes an affirmative finding of significance that analyzes all the factors necessary for consideration, 16,000 jobs may meet the test -- not as harmless error but as an affirmative finding of significance.

The better question is whether 16,000 stone setter jobs exist in the national economy either as a stone setter or as an example of other sedentary unskilled work with similar requirements.  Because the Commissioner is wedded to the DOT, we start there.  Stone setter is a sedentary, unskilled occupation with reasoning level 1. DICOT 735.687-034. Reasoning is generally the highest rating of the reasoning-math-language trilogy for general educational development.  Turns out that is true for this occupation as well.  If the only  limitations are sedentary and 1-2 step instructions, this occupation fits.

The O*NET OnLine puts stone setter in the occupational group of production workers, all other.  SOC 51-9199.  So does Job Browser Pro and the Specific Occupation Selector (the companion to the Occupational Employment Quarterly).  The Occupational Outlook Handbook states that this occupational group represents 263,500 jobs in 2016 with typical requirements of a high school education or equivalent and moderate-term training (semi-skilled or skilled).  The Occupational Employment Statistics states that the group represents 230,760 jobs as of May 2018.  The Current Population Survey states that production workers, all other represents 1,107,000 jobs in the national economy.  The CPS group includes semiconductor processors (51-9141), cooling and freezing equipment operators and tenders (51-9193), and production workers, all other (51-9199).  The other two groups do not account for the huge difference in job numbers.  But we do not need to resolve that problem, today.

Back to the DOT.  Stone setter works in the jewelry and silverware manufacturing sector.  The employment projections describe that precise industry designation.  NAICS 339910.  The EP states that this industry employs 300 production workers, all other.  There are not 16,000 stone setters in the national economy.

The Occupational Requirements Survey states that 63.9% of production workers, all other require medium exertion.  The ORS states that production workers, all other stand/walk 75% of the day at the 10th percentile.  There is not a statistical basis for the existence of sedentary work in the occupational group.

I use Occu Collect to run data.  You can do it jumping from web site to web site. See When to Use Occu Collect.

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