North Texas Businesses Looking to Hire as Federal Pandemic Unemployment Benefits End

Federal pandemic-related unemployment benefits ended Saturday in the state

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Roughly half a million Texans are losing the federal financial unemployment benefits that kept many afloat through COVID-19.

And as people start to go out more and resume pre-pandemic activities, businesses are looking to hire. Many storefronts in the Bishop Arts District in Dallas are advertising the same need: help wanted.   

Luis Cacares, the general manager of Coco’s Fire & Ice , is looking to fill 10 positions.

“We’re going about to hit our busiest season, so we want to make sure we’re prepared and we have the right staff,” Cacares said.

The Texas Workforce Commission will pay its final federal pandemic unemployment benefits for several programs the week ending Saturday. Gov. Greg Abbott in May opted out of further federal compensation related to the pandemic.

“We have three people who are looking to have interviews Monday. Two of them actually mentioned that that their benefits are up, so they’re looking to have a job now,” Cacares said.

Justin Sokul, assistant manager of the home goods store Home on Bishop, said it has been hard finding and keeping employees.  

“We’ve hired and they’re already gone, and we’ve put ads on Facebook and Instagram all the time,” he said.

Enrique Rodriguez, center manager for Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas, estimated that around 50,000 people in Dallas County will be affected by the changes.  

Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas has increased its own staff size to help more job seekers as pandemic benefits wind down.   

There is some encouragement for people who’ve spent the last year working from home, or teaching their kids — these are all transferrable skills.  

“You survived the time we just had. People forget that they’ve got survival skills. You are still here, in spite of everything,” Rodriguez said.   

Workforce Solutions provides help with job searches and training programs free of charge. More information about getting assistance for the job hunt is available on their website.

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