Columbians Struggle to Find Work Despite Lower Unemployment

4 years 9 months 1 week ago Thursday, September 05 2013 Sep 5, 2013 Thursday, September 05, 2013 6:19:00 PM CDT September 05, 2013 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
COLUMBIA - Hundreds of people impacted by cancer gathered together on a track Saturday in support of cancer fighters and... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, June 16 2018 Jun 16, 2018 Saturday, June 16, 2018 10:11:00 PM CDT June 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A podiatrist with the Jefferson City Medical Group is the first doctor in Missouri to use a... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, June 16 2018 Jun 16, 2018 Saturday, June 16, 2018 6:42:00 PM CDT June 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - At "Shred Fest," a local skateboarding competition, keeping participants safe was a top concern. An organization provided free... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, June 16 2018 Jun 16, 2018 Saturday, June 16, 2018 6:18:00 PM CDT June 16, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON, D.C. (CNN) - President Donald Trump suggested Saturday that he is using his administration's separation of families at the... More >>
3 days ago Saturday, June 16 2018 Jun 16, 2018 Saturday, June 16, 2018 3:14:00 PM CDT June 16, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — A second sheriff's deputy died early Saturday from injuries suffered when an inmate... More >>
4 days ago Saturday, June 16 2018 Jun 16, 2018 Saturday, June 16, 2018 6:45:00 AM CDT June 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Juneteenth Heritage Festival is keeping the history of Juneteenth alive in mid-Missouri. Juneteenth is a... More >>
4 days ago Saturday, June 16 2018 Jun 16, 2018 Saturday, June 16, 2018 4:29:00 AM CDT June 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Boone County's Republican clerk and the Democrat running against him have differing opinions over voter fraud. Challenger... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 6:59:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia’s City Channel was recently recognized for creative excellence in production by The Telly Awards Judging Council. Producers... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 6:43:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — One Wyandotte County sheriff's deputy is dead and one is in critical condition after... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 6:04:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
MILLER COUNTY- Investigators say the human remains they found in Miller County on Monday are from a male from the... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 4:48:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
FULTON - The two caregivers responsible for Carl DeBrodie will remain in jail after Judge Kevin Crane denied their bond... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 3:53:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - If a few more details with the Federal Highway Administration are worked out, MoDOT plans to close the... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 3:33:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — The Missouri Department of Economic Development announced on Friday five companies are expanding in Missouri with plans... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 3:30:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - APLEX, Inc., the contractor of the city’s Bike Boulevard Project, plans to close the entrance to Alexander... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 2:54:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS - While many people cringed when the National Weather Service issued a heat advisory for this... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 2:32:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - After a contract between the Jefferson City government and New World Recycling ended Friday, all nine of... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 2:30:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Former Governor Eric Greitens’ attorneys said Friday they will pursue payment from the state after officials said... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 1:39:00 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
QULIN (AP) — A 3-year-old girl is safe after spending the night in a rural Missouri cornfield, her faithful... More >>
4 days ago Friday, June 15 2018 Jun 15, 2018 Friday, June 15, 2018 1:06:04 PM CDT June 15, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 75°
9am 78°
10am 80°
11am 85°
12pm 87°