Rowan unemployment rate increased in June
By Sara Gregory
Unemployment in Rowan County and the state increased from May to June.
In Rowan County, 4,480 people, or 6.4 percent of the labor force, were unemployed in June, according to statistics provided by the N.C. Employment Security Commission. That’s the same percentage unemployed statewide.
Those laid off by Freightliner make up many of Rowan County’s unemployed, said Debbie Davis, manager of the county’s JobLink Career Center.
“We’re working with a very large number of people who were laid off from Freightliner, and that’s reflected in the numbers,” she said.
Freightliner laid off 1,180 employees in April 2007. Earlier this year, the company announced it would cut approximately 1,500 additional workers in June.
Rowan’s unemployment jumped to 0.4 percent from May to June, an increase Davis said was expected.
“We knew the numbers of people,” she said. “We anticipated a lot more people already.
“We’re getting a lot more telephone calls from people.”
Another big layoff came when the Original Steakhouse & Sports Theatre at Salisbury Mall closed its doors earlier this month. The restaurant employed 65, Davis said.
There are still job openings in the county, and Davis said the JobLink center now helps about 2,500 people a month search for jobs or training.
“We’ve had a good many who are interested in training,” she said.
Davis said the JobLink center has been meeting with large groups of unemployed Freightliner employees to help as many as possible.
“Now we’re working with people to get emergency unemployment compensation for those who have exhausted their other options,” she said.
Information about the JobLink center is available online at www.rowanjoblink.com or by calling 639-7529.