With few choices, some stop looking for work
by Ines Ferre
(CBS News) New York - This week's jobs report was a good-news/bad-news story. The good news: 163,000 jobs were created last month, more than expected. The bad news: Unemployment ticked up to 8. 3 percent. The reason: More Americans began looking for work. Still, plenty of job seekers have just given up.
Forty-five-year-old Camilla Hsiung gave up her job search two years ago.
"I felt it was a little humiliating to look for a job," she said, "that if you didn't look hungry enough, you weren't going to get a call back. I just got tired of the rejection, tired of trying and trying, and looking and looking, and it's just so hard."
"I want to use my talents to help people"
Hsiung said her graduate degree in psychology and her Chinese language skills only landed her temp jobs. She was hoping to get a job in social services or at a counseling agency, but couldn't find anything.
"I'm good at my job. Whatever I do, I'm always good. "It's just the availability, it's just that the chance, the luck. It's not there, it's not there."
People like Hsiung make the real unemployment rate feel much higher than the national average, said economist Peter Morici.
"If we counted those folks who are discourage, or working part-time because they can't get full-time work, the unemployment rate is 15 percent," he said.
Hsiung doesn't qualify for jobless benefits. "Well, I live on savings," she said about how she survives. "I live day-to-day. I don't think of the future too much. I have a very tight budget. I manage. It's America, so there are ways."
Hoping to someday rejoin the work force, Hsiung is pondering a second graduate degree to become a guidance counselor.
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