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1,000 jobs are open in Orleans County but businesses struggle to fill many of the positions

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 8 September 2017 at 11:26 am

ALBION – There are about 1,000 jobs currently available in Orleans County, ranging from entry levels positions to many mid-management and more technical jobs.

There are also about 1,000 people on unemployment in the county.

If the skills of those people matched the skill set for the available jobs, the county wouldn’t have any unemployment, said Jim Whipple, chief executive officer for the Orleans Economic Development Agency.

Many businesses have been waiting for qualified applicants to come forward for positions, said Kelly Kiebala of the county’s Job Development Agency. Some of the businesses hiring include Baxter and Brunner in Medina, and Saint-Gobain Adfors in Albion.

She is working with other agencies and Genesee Community College to boost training programs so residents can better fill available positions.

“There is frustration from businesses,” she told the EDA board of directors during this morning’s board meeting.

Some of the positions are third shift, which doesn’t appeal to many job hunters. Other available positions are in agriculture.

But many are jobs with day shifts at manufacturing and other local businesses. Kiebala said transportation is an issue for many residents. Many out-of-county residents aren’t willing to commute to Orleans, Kiebala said.

“It’s a precarious position,” Paul Hendel, EDA chairman, said about the unfilled jobs for local businesses. “We need to close the gap so there are more employees for businesses.”

EDA board member Ken DeRoller said the community, including schools, need to have the conversation about the local employment opportunities, and the skills and training needed to fill the positions.

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