19 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Community News Business News Make a comment faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Donald CommunityPCC- COMMUNITYVirtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPasadena Public WorksPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes More Cool Stuff Top of the News Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadena Subscribe Name (required) Mail (required) (not be published) Website Pasadena’s unemployment rate dropped to 15 percent in July, down from 16 percent in June, as the county and state also saw modest decreases, according to state and federal data.And with more jobs becoming available, employers are finding some candidates reluctant or unwilling to return to an in-person job as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, according to Chris Garza, regional vice president of the national specialized staffing firm Robert Half. He’s been working to connect jobs and job seekers in Los Angeles County for 17 years.While Pasadena’s unemployment rate decreased in July over June, it was still more than triple the 4.4 percent rate reported in July of 2019.Los Angeles County saw an 18.2 percent unemployment rate in July, down from 19.5 percent in June, according to state statistics. The statewide unemployment rate for July was 13.3 percent, down from 16 percent in June.Pasadena Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Paul Little said he had expected the city to fall between the county and state in terms of unemployment.“We have a higher percentage of hospitality workers in Pasadena than L.A. County or the state of California, but most of them do not live here,” Little said.“Also, our residents tend to have more education than either L.A. County as a whole or the state which would indicate a potential for Pasadena to exceed both, but I expect California’s numbers reflect the more rapid reopening of some other counties and San Francisco’s more successful efforts to control the virus,” Little said.One factor that may be keeping the rate from dropping lower is unrelated to the availability of positions, said Garza, whose company primarily staffs office positions such as accounting, finances, and human resources.Since the start of the pandemic and associated stay-at-home orders in March, “I’ve definitely seen improvements in terms of hiring and companies being able to bring employees on board,” he said. “What’s been different this time around versus, let’s say the Great Recession back in ’08, ’09 [is] the reluctance for people to want to go back to work in the office.”“That’s been the biggest struggle for us,” he said. When it comes to staffing offices that require in-person attendance, “It’s difficult to secure somebody that really feels comfortable doing that.”Candidates still outnumber available jobs by a factor of three to one, according to Garza. But not all of those job seekers are willing to work in close proximity with others.In addition to concerns over the pandemic, with students returning to school in an unprecedented online-only format, more parents feel obligated to find a way to stay home with them, such as by working remotely, Garza said.“The people that we’ve talked to, they really want to work, [but] they have real concerns about what could potentially happen, what they could potentially bring back to their families,” Garza said. “We’ve got the majority of the people that we speak to that want to work remotely, and that’s something we’ve never seen before.”As a result, many businesses are finding it difficult to hire qualified professionals for available positions.“And then, of course, we’ve also seen with the stimulus and the extra boost in the unemployment up through the end of July, we are definitely seeing people that were willing to wait it out and take the extra unemployment until that ran out to see if this COVID thing goes by,” Garza said. “But it obviously isn’t going anywhere, so we’ve seen more applicants come back into the market post-July, just not as many as we thought we would see.”Salon Passione of Pasadena owner Chad Brunochelli said he’s been trying, without success, to hire a hairstylist assistant.“I put ads in the newspaper for assistants and we can’t find any,” he said. “It’s hard to hire people because the unemployment check is so high that they’d rather stay at home than work.”Six weeks of ads and social media postings resulted in one potential candidate, Brunochelli said.El Cholo restaurant owner Blair Salisbury said he has also had some trouble finding employees lately.After posting an online ad, “We got two men that applied for cook’s positions, nothing for a server,” he said.“I really thought come August I’d see many people coming from unemployment, applying for jobs. And I just haven’t seen it, which is shocking to me because unemployment has been cut tremendously. I don’t know how they can survive on that,” he said.Robin Salzer, who formerly owned Robin’s Woodfire BBQ, described the current business climate as “a quagmire of problems for the employers and the employees.”“Employers don’t have jobs available, or not many of them do, because particularly in the service industry and restaurants, they’ve had to scale back 50 percent of their seating,” Salzer said. And during unfavorable weather, like the current heatwave, dining service at outdoor patios sufferers greatly.“The government stepped up and really supported the employees at the start of COVID with the $600 a week protection program. And frankly, some employees are making more money with the $600 a week than they were when they were actually working,” he said.Some workers are simply hesitant to return to work so long as the pandemic continues, he said.For employers, making remote working, whether in full or in part, an option may help increase the pool of applicants, Garza said.“It’s just simple ideas and just being creative and flexible with the remote option,” he said. “Maybe where the company’s reluctant to go 100 percent remote, there are definitely other ways and things that they can do to help put people’s minds at ease.”A significant number of smaller companies have been simply walking away from their physical locations once their leases run out, “and realized now that they can get the same amount of work done from home that they could from the office,” Garza said.For those seeking jobs, “There’s a lot of opportunities out there. You just have to maybe entertain industries that maybe you wouldn’t have before,” he said. “Some people, in L.A. especially, only want to work in entertainment. Well, clearly that’s an industry that’s been hit pretty hard, so they might want to entertain and expand their search in other industries.”“If you’re looking for a job, there’s probably no better time than today to put yourself back out there on the market, because there’s definitely going to be tougher competition for each job that they apply to in another month or so versus what we’re seeing today,” Garza said. “And so I would say if you’re looking for a job, get back out there now. Start applying, talk to staffing firms, do everything you can to get a job now because it’s going to get very, very competitive once everything starts opening back up.” STAFF REPORT First Heatwave Expected Next Week EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Community News STAFF REPORT Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Community News Pasadena’s Unemployment Rate Inches Down to 15% Some reluctant to return to in-person work over pandemic concerns By DAVID CROSS and BRIAN DAY Published on Tuesday, August 25, 2020 | 3:46 pm Your email address will not be published. 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New provisions have also been confirmed for students taking exams this year. The University stated that they would not be introducing a blanket ‘no detriment’ policy, in line with the Russell Group’s previous statement. Williams echoed the Russell Group’s statement in his email, saying that a “formulaic policy for all students is not the right approach, and that a more considered and tailored solution is required.” For finalists, the University will instead be introducing a rescaling policy across courses, comparing cohort achievement to marks in pre-pandemic years and scaling where necessary. The University will also be implementing an enhanced Mitigating Circumstances process, similar to last year’s, allowing students to set out the disruption they have experienced during the pandemic without a need for independent medical evidence. In an email sent to all students today, the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education), Martin Williams, confirmed that “formal teaching is very likely to remain online for most students, unless there is a significant change in Government policy”, describing this as a “difficult decision.” He also noted that “some students on a small number of additional courses will be invited to return in time for University in-person practical teaching to begin in Week 5 of Hilary term, where this is vital for them to complete the year”. These students should expect to hear from their departments early next week. Williams stated that the University “will also offer improved support and guidance for both students and examiners, to ensure MCEs are handled with empathy and consistency,” and encouraged students to keep a record of any disruption they face so that it can be considered during the MCE process. This comes after the SU launched their ‘Fair Outcomes for Students’ campaign, pushing for further action from the university to aid final year students. The SU called for a safety net policy, including rescaling and possible re-weighting of marks, alongside an enhanced mitigating circumstances policy. The Russell Group University newspapers recently published a joint editorial calling for a safety net policy, and urging Russell Group Universities “to act compassionately and responsibly.” Provisions have also been put in place for those with coursework deadlines. Students will now be able to submit an explanatory statement with their coursework if they feel they have been impacted by lack of access to resources, which will be considered at the marking stage rather than after marking by the exam board. Regarding a return to university later in the year, Williams stated that: “At this stage, we anticipate that we will be able to welcome students back to Oxford in Trinity term.” The University is currently working on options for “teaching and wider student life,” such as whether catch-up in-person work will be required for small numbers of students. An update will be provided by the University around the middle of term. Williams also noted that “the libraries are working to maximise the range of resources and support available to everyone through these means.” For students currently in Oxford, the Old Bodleian will be offering access to study spaces, and Williams anticipates that opening hours and spaces will be expanded as the term progresses. Staff at the Bodleian previously spoke to Cherwell, claiming that keeping reading rooms open is not “safe or sustainable.”
It’s not long now till National Craft Bakers’ Week, so make sure you get involved and promote your business. Running from 8-13 June, the aim of the week is to raise the profile of independent craft bakers – ‘The Shop That Never Sleeps’ – and, in doing so, capture increased spend from consumers. Craft bakeries of all sizes and location are encouraged to take part in the week, which promotes the important commercial and social role that craft bakers have in their local communities.‘The Shop That Never Sleeps’, which also be promoted to 19,000 primary schools, with ‘live’ streaming of bakers at work to appear on the website. The message to schools will be to go and visit their own local craft baker and see them in action.The activity is spearheaded by the National Association of Master Bakers (NAMB) and has been developed with a group of key industry players: Bako, Bakels, BakeMark, BFP Wholesale, British Baker magazine, California Raisins, Macphie, Marriage’s, Puratos, The Reynard Group and The Scottish Association of Master Bakers.For more information, as well as downloadable point-of-sale material, visit bakeryinfo.co.uk.