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Unemployment expected to rise in April, Workforce Solutions says

Workforce Solutions Capital Area says the March unemployment numbers show more than 25,000 people in Austin-area applied for unemployment benefits

AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas unemployment numbers from March were released on Friday. Workforce Solutions Capital Area said the numbers show more than 25,000 people in the Austin area applied for unemployment insurance. 

"The numbers are really quantifying what we’ve been seeing on the front lines. Workforce Solutions has received hundreds of calls from job seekers and employers who have really been scared and hurt in this current disaster, and so the numbers validate the need that we’re seeing," said Tamara Atkinson, the CEO of Workforce Solutions Capital Area. 

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She said, in Austin-Travis County, the unemployment rate is 3.4%. Atkinson said that while the March numbers are unprecedented, the numbers will likely increase even more. 

"We don’t think we’ve quite hit the peak yet of unemployment. We do think we’ll continue to see numbers go up in April, probably into May," said Atkinson. "We are encouraged with the governor’s task force and beginning to reopen our communities and our businesses. Obviously, we need to balance the economic demands with public safety."

Atkinson said Workforce Solutions is eager to get the community back to work. She said resources on its website, like job postings and linking essential workers to childcare assistance, can help people get back to work. 

RELATED: Unemployment Q&A with the Texas Workforce Commission

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