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State Unemployment Rate Stuck Around 10%

By Daniel Cherry | Published 22 Sep 2011 12:50am | comments
The WIN Job Centers are working to get Mississippians back in the job market

The numbers are in and they show Mississippi is still lagging when it comes to job growth. MPB's Daniel Cherry reports how the unemployment rate is stubbornly hanging around  10%.

Kami Borrows of Florence hasn't  been in the job market very long, but she's learning quickly, it's rough out there. Borrows is a recent high school graduate who lost her job last Spring.

"Sometimes I hear back, and sometimes I really don't. They'll say,'We'll call you', and then they don't call me. I'll have to call them, and they'll tell me, 'We've already filled the position'."

Mississippi's unemployment rate is 10.3%. Down 1/10th of a percent from July but up from August last year. While there was an overall increase in private sector jobs, but it was offset by a big decrease in manufacturing jobs. Mary Willoughby is the Director of Labor Marketing Information for the Mississippi Department of Employment Security, and she's not expecting big changes anytime soon.

"Typically we go into a recession later and come out later. So until you see a larger decrease in the nation, you're probably aren't going to see a big decrease in Mississippi."

It's estimated there are more than 133 thousand unemployed workers in the state. That's enough to fill Vaught Hemingway stadium in Oxford more than two times. Bennie Thompson is Mississippi's 2nd District U.S. Representative, and he's glad to see a jobs plan being put forth by President Barack Obama, but others could be doing more.

"While he's Commander-In-Chief, he's not the only person in Washington with a brain. So all those other individuals who profess to have all this knowledge about how to address the problems of unemployment and job creation...they need to get busy."

Mississippi's unemployment rate is a full 1.2% higher than the national average of 9.1%.

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The WIN Job Centers are working to get Mississippians back in the job market


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