Employers hopeful to hire more workers at local job fair during pandemic

Hampden County

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Industries across the country are still struggling to hire more workers during the pandemic.

Help is wanted across western Massachusetts. A job fair in West Springfield hosted many local businesses hoping to catch the eye of potential new employees and fill vacancies.

“I am hoping to come back with something full-time and a career that can last the rest of my life,” said Zachary Pacunas of Belchertown.

Help is wanted across western Massachusetts. This job fair in West Springfield hopes to catch the eye of potential new employees and fill vacancies.

“They are needing people, they are needing employees,” said Robin Wozniak of the West of the River Chamber of Commerce. “Help Western Mass small business out. It’s imperative to us at this time.”

A plea to get workers on their payroll as the pandemic lingers. Many industries were hoping to get workers on their payroll as the pandemic lingers. One bus company said they need more bus drivers as kids return to in-person learning again.

“Through the pandemic, we had drivers that didn’t drive and now we are coming back into the bus season,” said Patty Miolla of the Lower Pioneer Valley Educational Collaborative. “We do need drivers. We are down a couple and we are looking for some people.”

According to the latest Labor Department report, job openings have soared to nearly 11 million positions here in the US. That number is surpassing the number of people unemployed in the country. While the hospitality industry remains one of the hardest hit by the pandemic, K’s and Crazy Sea Food owner Eddie Chen is hopeful they’ll build the team they need.

“To bring the customers back we want the best restaurant experience,” said Chen. “In order to do it right, you need to hire enough employees.”

According to the current state jobs report, the employment rate has remained unchanged and is below the national rate at 4.9 percent.

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