LAKE CHARLES — There are hundreds of job openings to be filled in Calcasieu Parish.
300 of them are with the Lake Charles Memorial Health System. Those positions are just a few that were available at the American Job Center's Region V Job Fair at the Lake Charles Civic Center Tuesday.
"We had people, especially after the hurricane, that did not come back to town, that had to resign their positions. We're not seeing as many applicants as we have in the past," Jill Gilbert, Clinical Recruiter with Lake Charles Memorial Health System, said.
Employers say Hurricane Laura is partially to blame.
"Many of them couldn't get housing, they lost their housing and there is no new housing for them right now. Others decided to stay up north away from the hurricanes," Brad Nelson, President of Freedom Trucks, said.
In August of 2020, the unemployment rate was at 8.6 percent. One month following Hurricane Laura, it increased to 12.6 percent. Now that number has decreased, but employers say they are still not seeing the amount of applicants they need.
"We are seeing some come back. When they do come back, we try to get them hired back into their position," Gilbert explained.
Now they are looking to meet more candidates through hiring events and job fairs.
"They've been hitting and calling, calling, but I got to pick the right one," added Tameika Watley.
Tameika Watley is one of many who says she lost her job last year because of COVID-19; now she continues her search through job fairs.
For more information on job openings, click here.