The Great Recession of a few years back might be fading in the memories of some; however, in nine states across the United States, the job markets have not fully recovered according to a recent AP report. According to the report, the job numbers and overall size of the economy are still below 2008 levels in the nine states. Miguel Brown of Meridian, Mississippi is quoted in the report as saying “It’s tough. There’s not a whole lot of jobs in Meridian, especially that pay anything.” The report also notes that Alabama, Michigan, New Mexico, and West Virginia are still short of pre-recession job levels as well.
For Mississippi, unemployment rates can be high even during good times. According to the report, the unemployment rate in Mississippi fell to a record low of 5% in March. But, the state still tied for ninth place among states with high unemployment. According to the article, only 53% of adults were working in Mississippi in 2016. Only 21% of Mississippians over 25 years of age have a bachelor’s degree as compared to 30% for the rest of the nation. Another factor is that Mississippi’s economy depends on slow growth sectors, including government employment. The 2016 economy in Mississippi was smaller than it was in 2008. And more people are moving away from the state to find work.
But there are some positive indicators among the negatives. Community colleges are offering adult education classes and free career training to help improve the education of the workforce. This helps people find employment that pays above the minimum wage and helps them improve their circumstances. Loan demand in Meridian’s largest financial institution has risen to a level above the pre-recession levels. A multi-million dollar real estate project is ongoing in the downtown area. And other potential large investments in redevelopment are being considered.
When individuals and families get caught in weak job markets, financial problems can quickly mount up. Homes are lost in foreclosures and important assets like the family transportation can be lost. Wage garnishments can eat into already tight family budgets and make it nearly impossible to make ends meet. Many of the clients with whom I consult are caught in this situation. Fortunately, there is almost always something our attorneys can do to help. Even if you are unemployed, you can still consolidate debts into an affordable repayment plan so long as you have some stream of income. This is precisely what Chapter 13 debt consolidation is designed to accomplish.
Another option may be opting for a new, fresh start. This can usually be accomplished by filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case. This type of debt relief can get you set up to go where the jobs are without all the financial baggage from the past.
Either way, real and lasting debt relief may be something you want to consider. Take a hard look at your situation. Then, find a reputable and competent debt relief attorney to go over your options with you. You’ll feel better for it and you may be pleasantly surprised how it can change things for the better.