The number of weeks during 1979 in which a person did any work for pay or profit (including paid vacation and paid sick leave) or worked without pay on a family farm or in a family business. Weeks of active service in the Armed Forces are also included. These data are tabulated for all persons 16 years old and over who worked in 1979, regardless of current labor force status. This item was collected on a sample basis.
Census basic records and public-use microdata record the actual number of weeks worked, 1 to 52. Categories available in detailed tabulations include: 13 weeks or less, 14 to 26 weeks, 27 to 39 weeks, 40 to 47 weeks, 48 to 49 weeks, and 50 to 52 weeks. Statistics on weeks worked in 1979 can be used to put 1979 earnings in the appropriate perspective.
It is probable that the number of persons who worked in 1979 and the number of weeks they worked are understated since there is some tendency for respondents to forget intermittent or short periods of employment or to exclude weeks worked without pay. An evaluation study of 1970 census data on weeks worked last year found moderate consistency in the classification of persons who worked 50 to 52 weeks in 1969, but a high degree of variability for other weeks-worked categories.
Data on weeks worked collected in the 1980 census are comparable to data from the 1960 and 1970 censuses, but may not be entirely comparable with data from the 1940 and 1950 censuses because of a different structure to the question. In 1970, data on weeks worked were collected in intervals.
See also: "Hours Worked Per Week In 1979;" "Labor Force Status In 1979;" "Weeks Unemployed In 1979".