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State unemployment numbers low, Pikes Peak region businesses still struggling to fill positions


EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. — The state of Colorado is outpacing the rest of the United States. This week, Governor Jared Polis and the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment announced Colorado’s unemployment rate has dropped to 4.1 percent — the lowest since February 2020. Colorado's job growth over the past year reached 5.5 percent, better than the national rate of 4.6 percent.

"Our falling unemployment rate and rapidly climbing job growth means Colorado is recovering faster and stronger ahead of other states," Governor Polis said in a news release. "Now, as we progress from this pandemic and mark one year since the American Rescue Plan Act passed, unlocking urgently needed relief for impacted Coloradans, our private sector is fully recovered."

According to the Pikes Peak Workforce Center, El Paso County's unemployment rate, respectively, is in-line with the state's — sitting at 4.1 percent. KRDO spoke to businesses in El Paso County to see how they fared. Corter Coffee Roasters in Colorado Springs says it has struggled to find people who are willing to work a flexible schedule. Assistant manager Liana Horrace says it's the general theme among restaurants, cafes, and other eateries.

Horrace says she believes much of this is because the pandemic brought so many remote-work jobs and the flexibility to work from wherever. "I think that's hard in any small business because you can't provide all of the incentives that big businesses can," says Horrace.

Corter Coffee Roasters says that while business has picked up, they are currently understaffed, have been, and are looking to fill two positions. They are having a hiring event on Monday, March 21. You must call and schedule your interview in advance.

The Pikes Peak Workforce Center says that between El Paso and Teller Counties, there are 13,000 openings to fill.

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Natalie Haddad


1 Comment

  1. Well, about 3 percent of people still have not come back to the workforce. That’s not figured into unemployment, otherwise unemployment would be 7.1%. That 3 percent is probably about equal between the number of people who retired because of the pandemic and the people who saw it as an opportunity to live off the government.

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