LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)—According to the Louisiana Workforce Commission’s new report, Lafayette has lost 7,000 jobs in the past year.
“I know a lot of people that’s out of work. I know the industry really took a downturn. And a lot of people lost their jobs.” Said Brandy Breaux a Lafayette resident.
Experts are saying the main reason for the 7,000 jobs lost in Lafayette alone was because of trouble in the oil industry.
“We still are highly dependent on the oil field for our economy and since we’re dependent some way on that, we fell the brunt when the oil prices go so low.” Said Derrick Despanie a Lafayette resident.
And these two Lafayette residents said they felt the brunt.
“I have a lot of coworkers that I worked with that got laid off around the same time as me that were out of work for six and seven months,” said Breaux, “some people were out of work for two to three months.”
The unemployment rate for the Lafayette area raised this year from 6.4% to 6.7%.
“We kind of stand out that the rest of the country is getting a little better,” said Tina Johnstone with the Louisiana Workforce Commission,” but we are still suffering because of the downturn in the oil.”
For both Breaux and Despanie, getting back into the industry is harder than it seems. “I lost my job in January and I was able to get back to work in April in somewhat the same field but a little bit different.” Said Breaux.
“People in the oil field, when they lose their job, they have to find something that’s paying less than what they were making so it’s hard for them to climb back up that latter” added Despanie.
But no better what, it’s all about staying positive in the job search. “Just keep your head high and keep looking.” Suggests Breaux, “there are jobs out there, you just have to keep flipping over rocks and looking for them.”
“I’m just focused on really working for Gob because, with God, all things are possible.” Added Despanie.
The Lafayette Business and Career Solutions Center in hosting a professional career fair Nov. 30, 2016. It will be held at the Picard Center from 4 p.m. till 6 p.m.