Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Elderly Finding It Especially Hard to Find Work; Employment Adviser Urges Job Seekers to Stay Positive

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Elderly Finding It Especially Hard to Find Work; Employment Adviser Urges Job Seekers to Stay Positive

Article excerpt

Byline: Drew Dixon

Phil Schatz has been trying for two years to get a part-time job during the holiday season.

He's seen the stories about area businesses hiring droves of seasonal workers to fill shifts during the holiday stretch. But Schatz, a 70-year-old retired computer programmer and technical writer, has had no luck, no matter how many store managers say they're hiring.

"I'm just looking for seasonal work to get a little extra money," said Schatz, wearing a red holiday hat lined with white cotton and sipping coffee at a Mandarin eatery recently. "I think age may have a lot to do with it."

James Walker, employment and training coordinator for Experience Works in Jacksonville, said Schatz is not alone in his frustration. But Walker said it's doubtful age discrimination is to blame.

"aaIt's a common occurrence with everyone today with the labor market being so tight," said Walker, who's agency, funded by the U.S. Department of Labor, specializes in getting work for senior citizens. "It's just for anyone to get a job."

Schatz started applying for jobs in October for this holiday season. He has submitted about a half dozen applications so far at a variety of stores. He's even joined snagajob.com hoping to get Internet leads for work around Jacksonville. He got skunked in the 2010 holiday season as well when he applied for two jobs.

It's not like Schatz is afraid of working, he said. He is a volunteer member of the Jacksonville Council on Elder Affairs and provides plenty of volunteer hours at Mandarin United Methodist Church.

"It's very frustrating. Very few places call you back, email you or say they're not interested for a reason," Schatz said. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.