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Job-aid center aims to help laid-off state employees

Posted August 22, 2011

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— These days, Jeff Baxley's full-time job is trying to find a new one.

He was laid off from his business analyst position with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction in July.

"It was tough, because I haven't been unemployed since I was 18 years old," Baxley says.

Budget cuts to education hit his group hard.

"They cut 30 positions out of our department – we only had 90 – so that's a third of our department," he says. "So, to me, that's a big cut."

It's not just education. All state departments are feeling the impact of tough economic times.

Unemployed state workers getting job help Unemployed state workers getting job help

State personnel director Linda Coleman says the latest budget cuts are the largest reduction in workforce in the history of state government.

"In the past, when a state employee was laid off by one department, they were usually able to find a job in another department,” Coleman says. “But this is a new day in state government, and what worked in the past simply won’t work in these challenging times. We’re tightening our belts and doing more with less.”

That's why North Carolina has launched the State Employees Career Transition Center, at 313 Chapanoke Road in Raleigh. The center offers career counseling, resume-writing and interviewing skills development and classes that focus on starting your own business or exploring a new career.

It’s a new place where laid-off employees can go for information, training and help to find a new job, even if it's not with the state.

"Just through this facility, I've learned a lot," Baxley says. "I've learned how to look for a job better, how to interview better."

He's already had a couple of interviews and has more scheduled.

"I'm optimistic," he says. "There are positions out there."

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  • ecualumni1982 Aug 24, 2011

    The reason retires go back to work, is because NC pays its state workers sooo bad, they are forced to go back to work, so do you blame them. You only get 50% of your old income during retirment and it ain't free, its deducted for 30yrs at 6% out of your pay check.Example, HK 23K so after taxes at 1/2 they live on less than 10K a year. So, everyone stop talking trash about state employees, they work for 60-80% of the private market and provide services that it everyone needs, not wants. Yes, some state employees jobs are not needed, some are not the best at what they do, and many in the Agencies/Universities are extremely overpaid, but when you talk of budget cuts, they are not going to lay off only the bad state employees or those making the big dollars, rather they lay off those in HK, grounds, mid level professionals, admin, etc; you know the "Working Men and Women", but not the big wigs whos salaries exceed 250K.Where do these people work, move, & can they afford to move?

  • teague2003 Aug 23, 2011

    If they would stop hiring BACK people that have retired from the State and paying them retirement and a salary, there might be enough to pay others!

  • thought Aug 23, 2011

    so why are they better and getting info the rest don't. This should be for everyone. They are no better.

  • Scaramouche Aug 23, 2011

    "I think I deserve a raise--if I remember correctly that's when you get more money in your paycheck right?"

    personally I only consider it a raise if it exceeds the year over year cost of living increase. If it's actually less than that I consider it a pay cut.

  • andtoto2 Aug 23, 2011

    I work for the state (a little longer anyway) but I pay taxes too! So, aren't I paying my own salary then? Then I should not only get to keep my job (after 17 years!)I think I deserve a raise--if I remember correctly that's when you get more money in your paycheck right?

  • barbstillkickin Aug 23, 2011

    State is not taking care of there people and Purdue does not give a care. The senic group are the ones helping there employees just like the private sector. Why is it some people think because some group of people are trying to help state employees you have to attack these people. Do you not realize they have not seen raises in five years and that includes cost of living which most private sectors give there employees. People are so quick to attack. Shut up I am so tired of you blasting the residents who also pay taxes being bashed because they work for DOT.GET OFF THERE BACKS THEY ARE AS POOR AS THE REST IF NOT POORER. They could make twice what they do if they worked for the private sector but they are obligated to work to PROTECT THE ONES WHO BASH THEM. You are right they are not that smart.

  • Scaramouche Aug 23, 2011

    "That's part of the problem - the state has been "taking care of its people" at our expense."

    So you don't think the state should provide proper benefits, wages, and support for it's employees? Classic.

    You do realize that corporations do exactly the same thing, only instead of taxing you they raise their prices...at your expense.

    "Now we are all in the same boat and in case you haven't noticed, it's going down!!!"

    Maybe for you, not for me. Not for most actually. Maybe you should have planned better.

    "But, let's pay out MORE taxes so the state can "take care of its people."

    *yawn*

  • mt836 Aug 23, 2011

    talk to the private sector employeers who laid those people off. It's there responsibility. State is taking care of it's people.

    That's part of the problem - the state has been "taking care of its people" at our expense.Now we are all in the same boat and in case you haven't noticed, it's going down!!!
    But, let's pay out MORE taxes so the state can "take care of its people."

  • andtoto2 Aug 23, 2011

    I just recently signed my RIF paperwork. My last day is Sept. 30th. I wonder if they're hiring at the State Employees Career Transition Center? I do have hiring preference for the next year right?

  • Scaramouche Aug 23, 2011

    "What about all the people laid off in the private sector?"

    talk to the private sector employeers who laid those people off. It's there responsibility. State is taking care of it's people.

    "I guess they just have to go to the local Unemployment office. They can't use the "Transition Office"!"

    And many of the state employees will end up there as well eventually.

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