NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – South Carolina is continuing to face unemployment challenges after a hard hit to the job market by the COVID-19 Pandemic. Luckily, experts believe jobs will be on the way by the end of 2021.
The latest data from the SC Department of Employment and Workforce shows about 128,000 South Carolinians received unemployment benefits last week.
Representative Nancy Mace (R-SC) says she thinks the state has done a good job at balancing health and safety throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic.
“Overall state-wide our unemployment rate’s been hovering just under 4%. Our unemployment rate in the Lowcountry is slightly higher than that because we’ve been so hard hit by the travel industry — hospitality, our hotels are not full like we’re used to,” she says.
Steve Dykes, Charleston County’s Director of Economic Development says about 8,800 of those people live in his county.
“We’ve got a lot of fallout from COVID that has run our unemployment rate back up to 4.5%,” he says.
T-Mobile announced on Wednesday that they will be investing $10.2 million to add up to 540 new jobs at their Customer Care Facility in North Charleston. Ryan Johnson, a spokesperson for the city, says this news couldn’t have come at a better time.
“With a lot of industries being negatively impacted by the pandemic, we see new jobs like this coming in as filling a gap for folks that might be unemployed or exited the workforce,” says Johnson.
Charleston County leaders agree that many people will be able to take advantage of these jobs; especially because of the location on Rivers Avenue.
“That particular location I think is a great jumping off spot in terms of hiring to get a good number of people from Summerville and Goose Creek as well as North Charleston,” says Dykes.
Dykes says that he has been surprised at the amount of businesses that have managed to build themselves back up since the Pandemic began. He says T-Mobile is not the only business that will be hiring on a large scale in Charleston County this year.
“We’ve identified about 10 other companies that we think it bodes very well to have announcements as this year goes on. If all of our aspirations are fulfilled, that could be a total of 1700 jobs,” says Dykes.
For those interested in applying for a job with T-Mobile, click here.