Unemployment Remains High, But Job Seekers Hopeful

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HAZLETON -- It's another day without work for Gregory Zurn. The single dad of four lost his job eight months ago in Wilkes-Barre when his company closed, and has been looking for permanent work ever since.

"It`s been a struggle to say the least. Trying to find something permanent rather than just something a week here or a seasonal, just trying to get in some place long-term," said Zurn.

He's not the only one in a tough spot at the CareerLink in Hazleton. Alma Sporea hasn't worked for six months and is struggling to provide for her two kids.

"It`s hard you know because you have bills, you have kids, that`s what we`re facing every day," said Sporea.

According to the latest numbers from The Bureau of Labor Statistics, Luzerne, Lackawanna and Wyoming County Metro Areas have now had the highest unemployment rate in the state for the past 31 months. People at CareerLink are working to change that.

"I think a lot of times people underestimate their skills that they have that are transferable to another job, and that`s all things that we can help them look at," said Robert Pisko, CareerLink Program Supervisor.

With new jobs being posted every day, those at CareerLink in Hazleton said they remain optimistic that that new job could just be one interview away.

"I was very excited today that I`ve seen a new company. It`s hiring now, so it sure does," said Sporea.

Sporea and Zurn both hope this is one of their last trips to CareerLink in Luzerne County, hoping their persistence will soon pay off.

"I got a couple leads and I actually have some paperwork that I at least will have hopefully something relatively soon. You know you can`t give up hope, you have to keep on pushing on," said Zurn.