Help Wanted: A look at the local job market

Local News

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — After months of vaccinations, the economy has gotten its shot in the arm.

The latest May jobs report shows more than half a million new jobs were added nationwide, and in Bakersfield, businesses are hiring. If you’ve been to the Carl’s Jr. on Rosedale Highway over the last month, you’ve likely seen a “now hiring” sign on the front window. Across the street at the Black Angus Steakhouse, an even larger sign of the same message.

Downtown, the Taco Bell on 24th Street has a “now hiring” sign on the restaurant’s front door. That’s not the only Taco Bell location that is hiring. A quick search on the fast food chain’s website shows 105 openings at Taco Bell locations across the greater Bakersfield area.

But now the question turns to will people actually apply for work?

Some economists have pointed out that government unemployment benefits and stimulus checks are encouraging unemployed people to stay home instead of looking for work, but Dress for Success Bakersfield Founder and Executive Director Elaine McNearney says it’s not so simple.

“Sometimes there are other factors at play,” she said.

Specifically, McNearney said many women, and especially mothers, have not been able to apply for work. The reason?

“Far fewer women are looking for work because they unfortunately do not have the opportunity to go out and compete for the jobs,” she said. “There are jobs available, but women have to have childcare and they have to have someone monitor their children doing distance learning.”

However, as children return to school in the fall and the economy opens even further, McNearney said Dress for Success stands ready to help women. Since its founding, this nonprofit has supported women by providing professional attire, resume help and mentorship.

“If you find a job and want a job and want some help with your resume and your clothing, of course we’re here to help,” she said.

If you would like to receive services at Dress for Success, call 661-748-1809 or email bakersfield@dressforsuccess.org. Anyone looking to shop there can do so on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. at 1416 17th St.

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