Hundreds at DeKalb jobs fair

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MARTA representative speaks one-on-one with job seeker at DeKalb jobs fair

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - Scores of people spent the earlier part of their day job-hunting during a fair at Manuel Maloof Auditorium in Decatur.

The jobs fair, held from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 1300 Commerce Drive, offered job seekers the opportunity to meet with representatives from various DeKalb County departments and companies, including ONE DeKalb Works contractors and private-sector employers.  Bank, food and construction company representatives were also among those looking for new employees.

During the fair, job seekers were able to participate in self-help workshops, complete and submit applications, and receive information on resources and services available to residents looking for gainful employment.

Channel 2's Sophia Choi spoke to some of the hundreds of attendees waiting in line Saturday in hopes of getting a job.  Darlene Poole said she didn't mind the wait, using it as an opportunity to flex her networking muscles.

"Right in this line, we're networking," she said.  "It's already happening out here in this line.  Even though it's long, it's helping."

With Georgia's unemployment rate above the national average at 9.1 percent, organizers said it's no surprise that so many people are jumping at the chance to meet employers face to face.  In addition, about 15,000 Georgians are slated to lose their extended unemployment benefits next week, making more people anxious about finding work.

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"We've got about 1,500 jobs available today and we're looking forward to providing opportunities for folks," DeKalb CEO Burrell Ellis said.

Ellis and the Department of Workforce Development partnered to host the event  in recognition of National County Government Month.

The month-long celebration aims to raise public awareness and understanding about the roles and responsibilities of county government.