Unemployment is up… but not for the reason you think

NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI (WCBI) – All good things must come to an end.

The Mississippi Department of Employee Security (MDES) recently released their labor force report for the month of May, and unemployment is up from 4.2% to 5.1%.

There are a lot of factors that go into this up-tic, but what’s interesting is this isn’t because there aren’t jobs to be filled.

In fact, there are plenty of open jobs, it’s just filling them that’s the problem.

Every year, the month of May brings the seasonal up-tic of unemployment, but this year it’s not because there aren’t enough jobs.

“The real truth right now is lots of jobs open,” said WIOA Division Director for Three Rivers Economic Development, Bill Renick.

Renick says it’s the lack of knowledge for jobs available that contributes to unemployment.

“For the first time in the history of the United States, there are more jobs open then there are people to fill them, but the truth of the matter is in Mississippi and in a lot of states around the nation we still have issues in filling these jobs up and that’s what we’re trying to do,” said Renick.

May is obviously when area High Schools have graduation, but Renick says not every graduate is placed in the labor force.

“Realistically, about 50% of the high school graduates will enter the workforce and not enter community college or institutes of higher learning,” he said.

Other numbers come from inmates released from prison and residents coming off of government assistance.

There is a solution.

Recently, Three Rivers subscribed to a software that reports real-time job availability in their 27 county coverage area.

Right now, Renick says there are 14,000 jobs that haven’t been filled.

“I mean, it’s easy for people to say ‘Oh. There are 14,000 jobs open. Well then where are they? How do I get them?’ You know, we can tell them. You go to the WIN job center, we can help provide all that information. So that’s what gets us up every morning. We go to try and figure out how we’re going to help the next person get a job,” Renick said.

There are fourteen thousand jobs in our area that HAVEN’T been filled, and you can find that information at you WIN job center.

Filling these jobs could make June a much better month for Mississippi unemployment than May.

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