Statistics have been received from the Missouri Career Center and Workforce Development Office regarding the unemployment rate and initial unemployment claims filed for our area as well as for the State of Missouri.
Dunklin County's unemployment statistics have been running higher than the statewide unemployment rate. For the months July 2012 through November 2012, unemployment statewide was under 7.5 percent. July came in at 7.2 percent, August at 7.2 percent, September at 6.9 percent, October at 6.9 percent, and November at 6.7 percent. A total of unemployment claims filed during those months include the following: July, 32,376, August, 28,443, September, 25,014, October, 29,985, and November, 31,062.
The minimum wage in Missouri has risen from $7.25 an hour to $7.35 an hour which roughly means 80 cents more a day.
Given the numbers, Emily Modlin, functional leader/Workforce Development supervisor for Kennett and Caruthersville, discussed the situation in our immediate area.
"It's not any better. A lot of the people that have been drawing unemployment, it's ended. They're no longer drawing unemployment so those numbers aren't going to be in the statistics which is going to bring the unemployment rate lower. It's going to appear lower but with them not being in the statistics, in reality, it's actually higher.
When asked about the lower unemployment rates for some months, Modlin noted that it was due to people actually dropping off their unemployment benefits.
"They're no longer drawing unemployment. They've reached all their extensions and they are not drawing unemployment anymore so when they are not in that number, then that's going to automatically make those numbers down. I'll be interested to see what's going to happen in December when the figures come out for January, probably because they've extended unemployment so I don't know what that's going to do. Our phones have been going crazy over the extensions. If they are on an extension right now, the information is just to continue calling on their weekly claim. If they've exhausted their benefits, they say to call the 1 (800) 320-2519 to see if they would be eligible for extended benefits," she said.
For those in need of assistance, contact the following:
* Missouri Career Center1
100 South By-Pass, Suite 2
Kennett, Mo., 63857
Phone- (573) 888-4518
Fax no- (573) 888-1324
* Missouri Career Center
913 Highway 84 West
Caruthersville, Mo., 63830
Phone- (573) 333-0409
Fax no- (573) 333-1073
Employers are also encouraged to inform the career center of any job openings.