SJ opens new center for job training

October 16, 2009 6:58:58 PM PDT
California's unemployment rate dropped just a bit. The new figure stands at 12.2 percent, down slightly from 12.3 percent in August, but 39,300 jobs were lost. The numbers don't mean a lot to those without jobs, but some are getting help in San Jose.

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David Suarez is just one out of an estimated 2.2 million Californian's who can't find a job.

"A lot of times you don't get a response and sometimes when you do get a response it is just tell you there is nothing available," says Suarez.

Increasingly, it is the unemployed and not the subprime mortgage mess that's keeping the foreclosures crisis from improving. Maria del Rio is out of work and losing her home.

"The hard part is to come when you have to move out and tell your kids, especially the young ones, that don't understand why you have to move out," said del Rio.

Economists do say stimulus projects like one in San Leandro are helping to stabilize the unemployment picture. Both David and Maria are enrolled in a program to learn heavy construction skills in hopes of securing one of those stimulus jobs tied to road construction. Their instructor says there's a long line of people just like them.

"Our first week we had 175 waiting list after we filled the class," says Robert Green with the Center for training and careers.

The unemployed looking for help had reason to celebrate in San Jose on Friday.

The Center For Training and Careers held a ribbon cutting for its new 32,000 square foot facility on Story Road. It's twice as big as the old location and is already serving about 160 people a day with various classes and job training.

"We've suffered a lot of job losses in this area and people need to retrain and need an opportunity to improve their skills and get new jobs," says San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed.

The center is offering people like Maria, David and many others hope that when the job outlook does improve-they'll be a part of the recovery.

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