Jobs: in tough times
As published in MapleLine Magazine: May 6, 2009
by Mary P. Brooke
One of the benefits of the modern age is that support services kick into gear quickly when situations turn for the worse. Unlike during the Great Depression of the 1930s and in the somewhat socio-fiscally-naive times of mini economic downturns (1974, 1991), the Canadian economy and government-managed social safety net moved fairly quickly into action when the 2007-208 rumblings of the oncoming recession finally hit home in 2009.
In Sooke some slumbering services have sprung quickly to action. The WorkLink Employment Society has a job board and job support services at their two offices: 6625 Sooke Road (in Sooke town centre) and 2234 Sooke Road (Colwood). Sooke Harbour Employment Services at 6631 Sooke Road recently promoted their Older Worker's Employment Network program to assist workers age 50-64 to reintegrate into the workforce.
"The pace has certainly picked up since the new year," says Janice Booth, assistant director for WorkLink's two offices. There are more client visits overall; for every new client the employment counsellors also see repeat clients.
Job competition is tougher, says Booth. More people are looking for work due to layoffs, and older workers are staying in the workforce longer to build up their pensions; this allows fewer entry-level and re-entry workers to find employment.
Since the start of this year, Booth says client are taking longer to manage through the process at WorkLink. "We are all human. They tell their story. It always involves a family when someone is unemployed. They need resources."
WorkLink also provides help to income assistance clients to reduce barriers to a good quality of life (by finding housing, doctors, and support groups). MM
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This article is Copyright 2009 Brookeline Publishing House Inc.
See the printed article on page 24 of MapleLine Magazine (Spring-Summer 2009 issue / May-Jul.2009). Subscribe to MapleLine.