Columbians Struggle to Find Work Despite Lower Unemployment

3 years 6 months 3 weeks ago September 05, 2013 Sep 5, 2013 Thursday, September 05 2013 Thursday, September 05, 2013 6:19:00 PM CDT in News
By: Emily Spain, KOMU 8 Anchor
loading

COLUMBIA - It seems like the obvious solution, find a job and get out of poverty, but that's not a foolproof plan. There's the challenge of actually finding a job and one that pays enough to survive.

In Columbia, there are several large, stable employers like the University of Missouri-Columbia, the hospitals, two big insurance companies; just to name a few. The city's unemployment rate was 5.5 percent in July, which was lower than both the state and the nation's rate. The state stood at 7.1 percent and the nation had a rate of 7.4 percent.

So, it seems like getting a job in Columbia would be easy, but for the 5.5 percent, the search for a salary is almost a job in itself. Cheryl Wade-Coleman is one of those people looking for employment in Columbia.

"I need work because I've got bills and when my kidney failed those bills didn't stop," she said.

Wade-Coleman's getting help to rejoin the workforce after her health had other plans.

"I lost my husband, I lost my brother both who had failed kidneys. And then I found out that my kidney had failed."

Her kidney failed in 2003 and three years later she got a kidney transplant, that surgery
forced her to leave her job with the state.

"I'm 67 years old, my daughters have often said, ‘Mother, isn't it time to retire.' And I'm saying, ‘Yes, but the bills are still coming,'" she said.

Now, growing medical bills on top of life's basic needs are forcing her to go back to work.

"Money that I'm getting from social security is just not enough. So I need that extra umph."

Her age has her struggling to keep up with the ever-changing technology and young competition. She said she's been actively looking for jobs in Columbia for three years with no luck.

"I just keep going, just keep pushing, that's all I can do."

She came to Job Point in Columbia to improve her chances of getting a job. She's looking for customer service and data entry positions, similar to jobs she's had in the past. While she doesn't have a college degree to display, she's got the personality.

"She's super easy to work with," said one of the employees at Job Point who works with Wade-Coleman. "It's easy to introduce her to an employer for trying to network her with an opportunity because she's incredibly charming."

Wade-Coleman's one of many seeking the services at Job Point. She took office and technology classes there. The organization helps the disadvantaged and disabled improve their skills and find work.

"There is nothing we know of that breaks the circle of poverty better than employment, if we can train people to be productive and contributing citizens then they'll go a long way toward breaking that cycle," said Job Point CEO Jim Loveless

Every year, Job Point serves between 750 and 1,000 job seekers and the majority are under the age of 35. Wade-Coleman wonders if her age is turning employers away.

"I'm from the older generation and I think different than they do...It kind of makes you want to give it up and just say forget about it, but I'm not that kind of person," she said.

Wade-Coleman said she won't stop trying, her bills won't let her. And neither will her faith.

"God, let's put it that way. I trust in Him and I figure that eventually something will come. I trust in Him so He's gotten me this far," she said.

 

 

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The Missouri House has passed a proposal to spend roughly $242 million more than planned this... More >>
45 minutes ago March 29, 2017 Mar 29, 2017 Wednesday, March 29 2017 Wednesday, March 29, 2017 11:23:07 AM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Department of Social Services Acting Director Jennifer Tidball said Missouri still is giving money to Planned... More >>
2 hours ago March 29, 2017 Mar 29, 2017 Wednesday, March 29 2017 Wednesday, March 29, 2017 9:49:00 AM CDT in News
FERGUSON (AP) — Police in Ferguson, Missouri, are investigating after a private security guard shot an armed man at the... More >>
2 hours ago March 29, 2017 Mar 29, 2017 Wednesday, March 29 2017 Wednesday, March 29, 2017 9:47:37 AM CDT in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A man has been sentenced to life in prison in connection with the 2014 southwestern Missouri shooting... More >>
2 hours ago March 29, 2017 Mar 29, 2017 Wednesday, March 29 2017 Wednesday, March 29, 2017 9:42:50 AM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Four St. Louis officers are suspended without pay amid internal and criminal investigations over whether they... More >>
2 hours ago March 29, 2017 Mar 29, 2017 Wednesday, March 29 2017 Wednesday, March 29, 2017 9:36:25 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA- Columbia Solid Waste Utilities will open its Hazardous Household Waste Facility Saturday. Columbia residents can drop off their... More >>
4 hours ago March 29, 2017 Mar 29, 2017 Wednesday, March 29 2017 Wednesday, March 29, 2017 7:18:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The Family Access Center for Excellence, or FACE , is working to help more families in Boone County... More >>
14 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 9:55:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The U.S. House voted to repeal a set of Obama-era consumer protection rules Tuesday. The move lets Internet... More >>
14 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 9:18:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Members of Missouri's House Budget Committee want to make records of elected officials' flights on the... More >>
15 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 8:52:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A bill looking to remove construction worker payment restrictions on contractors is moving along in the capitol... More >>
16 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 7:09:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Crews responded to a vehicle fire on northbound Highway 63 in Columbia around 6:30 Tuesday evening, just south... More >>
16 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 7:09:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Federal prosecutors allege that two Kansas City men killed a man after kidnapping him and attempting... More >>
17 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 6:49:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A Missouri appeals court panel said utility regulators had no authority to grant conditional approval for... More >>
18 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 6:08:00 PM CDT in News
BUNCETON - A water leak that occurred around 5 p.m. on Tuesday forced the city to turn off the water... More >>
18 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 5:49:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A Missouri woman who used her neighbor's home to receive a fraudulent loan was convicted of... More >>
20 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 3:44:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The Missouri House gave initial approval to a bill that would overturn a St. Louis ordinance... More >>
20 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 3:33:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY – On April 4, Cole County voters will see two propositions on the ballot designed to improve Jefferson... More >>
20 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 3:28:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service placed native bumblebees on the endangered species list at the start of... More >>
21 hours ago March 28, 2017 Mar 28, 2017 Tuesday, March 28 2017 Tuesday, March 28, 2017 3:06:00 PM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 50°
12pm 54°
1pm 56°
2pm 58°
3pm 60°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

12:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Noon
12:30p
Inside Edition
1:00p
Days of Our Lives
12:00p
Jerry Springer
1:00p
Maury
2:00p
Judge Alex

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Blindspot
8:00p
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
9:00p
Chicago P.D.
7:00p
Arrow
8:00p
The 100
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld