Columbians Struggle to Find Work Despite Lower Unemployment

4 years 2 months 2 weeks 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
JEFFERSON CITY - Gov. Eric Greitens announced Thursday he appointed 27 people to serve on state boards that work to... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 6:44:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Some Jefferson City residents are hoping to save five dilapidated but historic houses from demolition by getting... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 6:44:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - Several blueprints and over $400,000 later, new water pipes are ready to go. Bryant Street and Switzler... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 6:40:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Columbia scored a 100, Springfield came in at 21 and St. Charles collected 38 points, but the... More >>
2 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 5:23:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Former conference rivals Missouri and Kansas State will play a home-and-home football series during the 2022 and 2023... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 3:42:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Two former MU athletes are reinventing a breakfast favorite: waffles. Start Right Foods is a food brand focusing... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 3:05:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — An Osage Beach woman was sentenced to three years in federal prison without parole for... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 3:04:53 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City police have received reports of 15 thefts from unlocked vehicles in the past few days.... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 2:44:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill said she's "shocked and concerned" about allegations against fellow Democratic Sen. Al... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 2:19:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Mizzou basketball will once again be playing without prize recruit Michael Porter Jr. Thursday night. The 6'10"... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 2:19:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in Sports
COLUMBIA - A physician and concerned Missouri residents gathered outside the University of Missouri Hospital to call for an end... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 1:46:00 PM CST November 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri Department of Secondary Education released its annual performance report on the status of schools districts... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 11:54:00 AM CST November 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - A Missouri State Representative is asking for your feedback when it comes to raising taxes for transportation funding.... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 11:07:00 AM CST November 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Riders are boarding the train more and more according to the Missouri Department of Transportation. MoDOT reported... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 11:06:00 AM CST November 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - After-effects of Hurricane Maria are felt far beyond the borders of Puerto Rico as country is a large... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 9:00:00 AM CST November 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia taxpayers approved a multi-million dollar indoor basketball, volleyball and pickle ball facility with the Park Sales tax... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 8:14:00 AM CST November 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Former Mizzou baseball pitcher and current Washington Nationals' pitcher Max Scherzer has been named the 2017 National League... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 3:08:00 AM CST November 16, 2017 in Sports
BOONE COUNTY - The Boone County Sheriff said there are at least eight reports of stolen tools in the north... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, November 16 2017 Nov 16, 2017 Thursday, November 16, 2017 2:27:00 AM CST November 16, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 45°
4pm 46°
5pm 44°
6pm 42°
7pm 40°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

2:00p
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
6:00p
Football Night in America
7:20p
Sunday Night Football
1:30p
Vertical Limit
4:00p
Rules of Engagement
4:30p
Rules of Engagement

Tonight's Schedule

6:00p
Football Night in America
7:20p
Sunday Night Football
7:00p
The Face of an Angel
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Family Guy