2 sisters cope with US job market

September 5, 2011 (CHICAGO)

Among the unemployed are two area sisters who are coping and surviving today's job market.

Having another day off doesn't sit well at Lynette Amato's home -- holiday or not.

"I don't think anybody wants any days off these days. I think there's too many days off for too many of us," Lynette Amato said.

Since 2007, Lynette Amato has been laid off twice as an IT project manager.

"There's no stability. You go from job to job, or employer to employer, and in the last year and a half, I've had three employers," Lynette Amato said.

Lynette Amato's home has also been refuge for her sister's family. Randi Amato was an iron worker until an accident sidelined her career in 2007. She lost her home, and while she's physically capable for many other jobs, but simply hadn't had luck. She, her son and her dogs now inhabit her sister's basement.

"You're filling out application after application after application, and it gets very depressing. Not only do you have the crap from your life being depressing but you get the feeling of being weighed down and you can't move forward," Randi Amato said.

Both sisters have had to use their pensions to survive time between jobs. Their sons and dogs all have had to learn to live together for now.

"It's a good thing it's a big house," Randi Amato said.

Also, there is some reason to hope -- they both found short-term work. Lynette has been hired back by one of her former employers but it is for a short term contract that ends this year. Randi Amato was hired at a Halloween shop but that job also ends in a couple of months.

" I'm lot e very, very grateful. I'm very grateful. I'm only making $10.25 an hour -- it's a lot different than my union wages but it's something," Randi Amato said.

The sisters have tried to make the most of any down time. Both skilled craftswomen, the sisters are finishing Lynette's home renovation and helping friends with home projects.

One of Randi's other passion's is fostering animals. Two of her foster dogs were relinquished when those pet owners lost their homes.

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