Job seekers to Obama: Nice speech; show us jobs

September 9, 2011 (CHICAGO)

Obama traveled to Virginia Friday. The plan is encouraging news for some job seekers ABC 7 spoke with. What we heard is that it was a good speech, but workers say: Show us the jobs.

Kevin Winkfield, Jr. watched the president's speech, wanting to hear something promising for a veteran looking for work.

"I bring worldly experience, well-traveled, well-educated, I've been an honor student since I've been in high school, graduated with honors in college," said Winkfield.

Winkfield is frustrated by the bickering in Washington and is skeptical Congress will get the job plan done.

He hopes something is done to allow veterans like him a chance to prove themselves.

In his case, he says he was nationally certified medic in the military but lacks local certification.

"You just gotta keep on pushing - that's what you get when you hire a veteran, you get a person that's... there's no quitting," said Winkfield.

Stephanie Jorden, who became part of the nation's 9.1 percent unemployment rate only two weeks ago, is in support of the president's plan create more jobs and strengthen the economy by offering tax breaks to workers and incentives to employers who hire.

Jorden says it's the first time she's been unemployed in 30 years. Now, she's doing everything she can to get a job, including a stop Friday morning at the office of employment security.

"I'm finding there's positions out there and I'm not certain I'm qualified for them, but I'm trying anyway," Jorden said.

But not everyone supports Obama's jobs plan.

"Spending more money to fix the debt problem won't work," said Dave O'Moora.

"People seem to forget the fact that he didn't cause these problems. He inherited them and he's working to try to find solution so American can get back on their feet," said Keith Chalmers.

Sisters Denise and Diane Niesman from Wheaton are big Obama supporters. Denise proudly wears an Obama necklace. They both think the president will have a tough time convincing some Republicans to pass the jobs bill.

"He can't do it alone. That's why he asked for help from everybody to talk to their congressman not that every congressman will listen to them, you know? Because they have another agenda," said Diane Niesman.

Debbie Hermann was eager to hear the president's job plan and is even more eager for the plan to be put into effect.

"I was very excited to hear what he had to say as far as the bridging work and the concrete and construction that's going to be going on because that would open up many, many jobs," said Hermann.

Hermann, a single mother of four, recently underwent a career shift. She was a photographer driving a school bus, then entered a training program to become an apprentice carpenter, looking for the better wages and benefits that being a union carpenter could bring to her and her family.

"It's hard, because you want to be able to provide for your kids, to send them off to college, put food on the table, and just the basics, and it's not there," said Hermann.

On Friday, Hermann has a lead on a job. She was not sure where it will go, if anywhere at all, but she was taking any chance if it could mean work in her new trade.

For job seekers sacrificing time and money to get more training, finding a soft job market upon completion could turn out to be doubly draining.

The president is asking that people to call their local lawmakers and to let them know they think and if they support the jobs plan. He's urging congress to pass the bill as quickly as possible.

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