Meet today’s unemployed (yes, there are a lot of them)

The Brooklyn Paper
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They are the faces of the unemployed — your neighbors, your friends, your relatives — and they came, by the hundreds, to a job fair at the Brooklyn Academy of Music on Tuesday.

Most went home empty-handed. The economy, you understand.

Actually, the job fair, which was organized by a company called “New York New Jersey Employment Guide,” was more for employers than for their would-be wage slaves.

“With so many companies letting go of highly qualified candidates, now is the time to hire that ‘A’ list employee you have been looking for!!” stated the promotional material for the job fair, which drew such companies as T-Mobile, the Center for Allied Health and Nursing, St. Joseph’s College, the Army National Guard, Health Plus and New York Life.

There was even (perhaps this was appropriate) a pawn broker looking to hire new workers.

“We are hiring for all positions,” read Gem Pawn Brokers’ posting on Craigslist before the job fair. The company billed itself, proudly, as “New York’s largest pawn broker.”

At least one possible employer said the endless procession of job-seekers was a bit depressing.

“I am seeing a lot of people here that have been looking for jobs for a long time,” said Ed Schwartz, the director of the Manhattan Institute, which set up a table in the BAM Cafe.

Here’s what potential employees had to say:

“I’m looking for a job in construction or electrical work, but all they have here are health care jobs. So I signed up for some health care training.” Lamech Ben-Israel, 32, Bushwick, unemployed for one year.

“I was interested in a jeweler position, and I also signed up for information on the Army Reserve. I tried years ago to join the Reservek, but I didn’t make it.” Eldon Bourne, 29, Kensington, unemployed since January.

“I’m looking for anything in the business field.” Andra Cojac, 26, Sunset Park, unemployed for two months.

“I am looking for pretty much anything at this job fair.” Andy Holloway, 35, East New York, unemployed since September.

“I am looking for pretty much everything. I came to the fair looking for a home healthcare job.” Michelle Reid, 23, Queens, unemployed for six months.

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Reader Feedback

local parent from Fort Greene says:
Good job, Brooklyn Paper, covering this.
April 1, 2009, 6:30 pm

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