by Katrina Smith
Over the past few months, the job market has been affected by COVID. In the Gibson County areas alone, the unemployment rate reached an all time high at 12.3 – percent in April 2020, compared to 3.6 – percent in April 2019. Businesses were forced to lay off employees and in some instances closed the doors. When this happened, the government provided an extra cushion for those who were out of work and offered unemployment benefits, stimulus packages, food benefits and rental assistance to name a few.
Now that the world has adjusted to COVID, there is a change in the “norm” for jobs. At one time, people were looking for the jobs, but now the jobs are looking for the people.
From 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. on Tuesday, June 29, Humboldt, Milan, and Greater Gibson County hosted a job fair and business expo. The Greater Gibson County Chamber of Commerce serves the following cities in Gibson County: Bradford, Dyer, Gibson, Kenton, Medina, Rutherford, Trenton, and Yorkville in Northwest Tennessee.
“We know the citizens in our communities need work, and we know the employers need workers; so we took the initiative to have this expo to help both parties,” said Amanda Love, Executive director of The Humboldt Chamber. “We work with Milan and Gibson County Chamber focusing on leadership, workforce, and tourism.”
There were about 20 vendors from all over the Gibson County area. They were set up in the Humboldt Medical Center displaying information about their companies. Vendors who participated varied and included industries from education, manufacturing, banking, healthcare and more. They were eager to meet new applicants, hoping to get them started as an employee.
Now that the expo is over, what happens next? There are people still unemployed, and employers still need workers. The Gibson County area has a workforce committee that is geared to help service your needs. It consists of cities in the Gibson County area.
“We will continue to help our citizens and employers find what they need, said Julie Ward, Milan Chamber. “The Gibson County workforce committee has developed programs in schools, host seminars and job fairs.”
There is a Jumpstart scholarship available for students. GIBCO HR consistently hosts round table discussions finding news and solutions that will help the workforce issue.
If you or someone you know are looking for a job, please send them to the American Job Center located at 1751 Main Street in Humboldt or Labor and Workforce Development located at 1481 Mullins Street in Milan.