by Tashun Chism
Workforce Solutions annual job fair drew even more people today than last year, partly because of recent closings and layoffs at several different Lufkin factories.
The City of Lufkin's Economic Director, Jim Wehmeier, said, "You hate to see anybody be displaced, but in the real world that happens. So it's good to see so many employers here hiring people."
More than 50 different employers were at today's job fair. Some of those were city and state employers. Job seekers and employers agree a job fair like today's makes things a lot easier for everyone.
Job seeker Anthony Woods told us, "You don't have to travel all over the place. It's all here in one place so it makes it convinient for everyone to get as many applications in as they can."
"You can actually get hands on, meet with the businesses as well as see exactly what you're dealing with with a person who's seeking employment so that you can put them in the correct place," said Lufkin Goodwill recruiter LaTonia Sanders.
With a four percent unemployment rate, Lufkin's economy is currently very stable. That's less than both the state and national unemployment rates. But if today's turnout is any sign, Lufkin's economy will grow even more.
"As you look around the room and see companies looking for employees it means that they're companies that are growing and looking for new talent, and that's always good news," Wehmeier said.
"This will help empower our community because when you allow people to be employed and gain self dignity, as they become empowered, it empowers the community overall," Sanders said.