BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Nearly 41,000 people in Kern County are out of work as the county's unemployment rate hovers over 10 percent.
Numbers released by the Employment Development Department show Kern County has the fourth-highest unemployment rate in the state at 10.1 percent. The county's unemployment rate is nearly three percent higher than the state rate and almost twice the national average.
And in California, there are currently nearly one and a half million people who are unemployed. Soon the state will stop providing benefits to people who are not actively applying for jobs.
Federal law requires people to be actively looking for work to be eligible for unemployment benefits. States were able to waive that requirement during the pandemic because so many businesses were ordered to close.
Since the pandemic began California has processed more than 20 million unemployment claims. Self-employed people who apply for pandemic unemployment assistance will also need to prove that they're working to improve their business or looking for work. The state will be sending notices out to inform people of the change.
And if you're one of the tens of thousands of Kern County residents looking for work you're going to need as many resources as possible to help you land that next job.
Josh Conner from Job Fest Kern County has some tips on how to get back into the workforce: