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Florida unemployment numbers tick upward; local job centers say job numbers are increasing

Florida Unemployment
Florida Unemployment(WWSB)
Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 9:17 PM EDT
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SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - Florida’s unemployment rate again ticked upward and employers are scrambling to fill openings amid a surge in spending as people emerge from the coronavirus pandemic.

On July 16, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity announced the state’s unemployment rate for June stood at 5%, up 0.1% from May.

Vice president of CareerSource Suncoast, Anthony Gagliano, said even though the unemployment rate is up, it’s not risen that much.

“I think the good thing here is the huge increase in labor force participation with the June numbers that were released on Friday,” said Gagliano.

On paper, the increase from May 20 added 83,000 people to Florida’s workforce size and a half-million over June 2020, which Gagliano said is due to a changed mindset.

“I think that tells me people want to get back to working and that there are lots of opportunities out there,” said Gagliano.

Which also leads to more job fairs here on the Suncoast in recent weeks.

“Last week it was almost nothing but hiring events in the area,” said Gagliano.

Including the event held this week by Florida JobLink host over 25 employers, which Director Stephanie Sims said she sees a good thing for the area due to employers being a little more lenient and giving to attract candidates.

“Many employers are offering all kinds of bonuses and they are relaxing requirements for college degrees and mandatory experience,” said Sims.

Due to this shift, Gagliano said this is something they always try to explain to people.

“You don’t know what you don’t know,” said Gagliano. “Who’s hiring and what you do -- how that translates -- that’s something we always talk about with clients.”

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