Labor officials worry unemployed are giving up - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Labor officials worry unemployed are giving up

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By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) –  Labor officials worry thousands of unemployed Georgians are losing hope for finding a new job.

June's unemployment numbers were down sightly from May. Georgia has now exceeded the national unemployment rate for 33 consecutive months. State labor officials understand workers are discouraged, but say they shouldn't give up searching for a job.

Unemployed workers at the Labor Department's Career Center say it's tough, frustrating, and disheartening to search for months for a new job only to find nothing. Get this for every job available in southwest Georgia there are more than five people trying to get the position.

William Dent has worked various commercial construction sites for 30 years. Now he's behind a computer keyboard, searching for a job.

"It's non stop it just doesn't end," said Dent.

Dent's been out of work since August when former employers shut down and went out of business.

"It's saddening, it's disheartening, it's irritating, it's everything, every emotion you can put to it concerning a job offer right now but, you can't quit," said Dent.

It's obvious others have. Georgia's labor force shrunk by nearly 18,000 in June. That's the largest over the month decline since May of 2001. More than 230,000 Georgians have been out of work for more than seven months. Labor officials say that where a new skill and going back to school can help.

"Not all the classes you take have to be a four year program, it can be just a class you go and sign up for and take that's going to help you shape your skills," said Betty White, Albany Career Center Manager.

Career Center managers also suggest reviewing your resume or taking a work shop on face to face interviews. William Dent's now applying for jobs he hadn't considered before.

"I'm to the point where I don't have a choice anymore, I'm looking asking applying for anything that I can come up with," said Dent.

He doesn't see giving up as an option with bills to pay.

"If I miss a day, probably minutes, anything that position that might be there, someone else may get it," said Dent.

As frustrating as it is, he's not willing to let a job he may be perfect for go to someone else. That old saying, the early bird gets the worm is apparently true.

Labor officials say if you're serious about finding a job, you need to look first thing in the morning. They say because of the competitiveness by afternoon those jobs could already be gone.

The Albany Career Center says several Albany companies are getting ready to hire workers, but wouldn't say which companies those were.  According to the Georgia Department of Labor, the long-termed unemployed now account for 49 percent of the jobless workers in Georgia.


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