CLEVELAND, Ohio — Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis in March, over 136,000 Cuyahoga County residents have applied for unemployment. County Executive Armond Budish says a majority of those people are still without a job.
“All you have to do is look around, I mean, there's stores, they're shuttered, there's businesses that are closed, and people aren't working, so even though the state has reopened the economy, in theory, there's still a lot of people that are out of work. It's the highest at least since the great depression, it is awful. These are real people with real needs that are having trouble making their rent payments and their mortgage payments and putting food on the table. This is a real, real crisis," Budish said.
What You Need To Know
- Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis in March, over 136,000 Cuyahoga county residents have applied for unemployment
- With support from The Mandel Foundation and the Cleveland-Cuyahoga chapter of Ohio Means Jobs, the county is hosting a virtual job fair June 15-19
- Ohio Means Jobs says there are hundreds of open positions, ranging from entry-level to executive roles in various fields
With support from The Mandel Foundation and the Cleveland-Cuyahoga chapter of Ohio Means Jobs, the county is hosting a virtual job fair June 15-19. While the COVID-19 pandemic forced the need for an "online" job fair, organizers say they realized more employers can participate—presenting greater opportunities for job seekers.
“Here's the company. Here’s the job openings. Here's the specifics about the job. You can click right on in and enter into that workspace and meet the employer. So it could be, you know, a meet and greet with the employer and hopefully some individuals will move on and get hired because of this,” said Ohio Means Jobs Interim Chief Executive Officer Frank Brickner.
Brickner says many people have been laid off and are reexamining their career paths due to the coronavirus pandemic. He says as the economy adapts to new conditions, Ohio Means Jobs can connect them with new opportunities.
“People are looking for hope right now, maybe they were a little blindsided, they're hurt, and now it's like let's help them up and move them on. There's nothing better we can do for someone than to get them moving on a career or a job,” Bricker said.
Ida Ford, workforce development board administrator for Ohio Means Jobs, says there are hundreds of open positions, ranging from entry-level to executive roles in various fields.
“We have anywhere from IT, health care, service industry, logistics. Just about everyone wants to participate in this event," Ford said.
County Executive Budish says to ensure everyone can take part in this free 5-day event, the county and nonprofit organization PCs for People will be distributing computers to those in need.
“We’re making available 1,000 computers and hotspots and internet access for a couple months so that people can sign up and participate in the job fair. It's critically important that people have access to the internet and we're working on that right now as part of this program," said Budish.