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CareerSource Florida offering aid via workforce outreach campaign

By Staff | Apr 10, 2020

A statewide leader in the businesses community has launched an initiative to help residents file for unemployment and find new jobs for those who may be out of work.

CareerSource Florida launched its “Help is Here” workforce outreach campaign on April 3 to help Floridians and businesses navigate economic challenges presented by COVID-19. The network is also providing assistance to residents applying for reemployment assistance, which is available through the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, by providing access to new paper applications for the state program.

“Job loss or major business impacts are devastating under any circumstance and people need sound advice, the most current information and a source of hope during a challenging time,” CareerSource Florida Board Chairman Kevin Doyle said in a prepared statement. “We know people need help now and the state’s Reemployment Assistance program may be the first step on the path to economic recovery. The CareerSource Florida network can assist with this and other workforce needs such as finding a new job, training and more.”

“Help is Here” is its focused public and business outreach effort to:

– Provide an immediate response to connect job seekers and businesses to critical resources needed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

– Connect Floridians to the Career-Source Florida network’s local offices for customized, personalized help.

– Develop innovative solutions to generate job recovery and retention and business continuity, driving economic recovery.

The CareerSource Southwest Florida office director of communications, Jim Wall, expressed his sympathies to all families and businesses involved and said the current situation and their response is working on the fly as new developments occur.

“This is still changing, every day,” Wall said. “This is a fluid situation.”

CareerSource has posted listings of businesses that are currently hiring on its Website, as many are looking for limited help.

“We have called and asked businesses if they are hiring,” Wall said. “I’d really call this short-term gap employment, although it may turn into full-time.”

Wall said companies such as Amazon and Publix are now hiring.

CareerSource officials said while some businesses have been forced to downsize operations, many industries are ramping up quickly to hire. Business services available through CareerSource include recruiting employees, screening resumes or applications and other help with hiring, such as conducting virtual job fairs.

Wall recommended that potential hires, if they are to come in to a business for an interview, make sure they have their identification and Social Security information ready to go.

“The process has been fast-tracked to hire,” he said.

Wall also recommended those who may be out of work use their time to acquire new skills that may help them find employment.

“There are a lot of employability skills to be learned on the Internet,” he said.

Part of the initiative is to also assist with unemployment applications.

They can also help reset an applicant’s pin number, something Wall said they have been having to do a lot recently.

“It seems to be an issue. We’re getting lots of calls on that,” he said.

Floridians now have four ways to apply for Reemployment Assistance: Department of Economic Opportunity’s online Connect system; a fillable PDF available online that can be completed electronically, printed and mailed to the DEO; by submitting a printed application that has been completed by hand and mailed to the DEO; and via phone with help through a Reemployment Assistance Call Center.

Those unable to download the paperwork can pick up a hard copy at a CareerSource location, such as CareerSource Southwest Florida, at 6800 Shoppes at Plantation Drive, Unit 170, Fort Myers.

For additional information, visit www.CareerSourceSouthwest-Florida.com.