Verify: Macon-Bibb jobs are on the rise

VERIFY: Macon-Bibb jobs on the rise

Many of you on social media reacted to Monday's announcement that the Macon Boeing plant will close in December. While many of you are saying jobs are leaving Macon, we wanted to find out for you if that's true. Jobie Peeples verified the facts.

"It really bothers me because, you know, you have kids and you can't work, so it's stressful," Kahdija Williams said.

Kahdija Williams is one of the 3,397 people who were unemployed in Macon-Bibb in August.

That number comes from the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

But Stephen Adams, with the Macon-Bibb Industrial Authority, verifies that jobs in Macon have increased in the last 5 years.

"The unemployment rate is going down, the amount of jobs is increasing," Adams said.

We verified from those federal job statistics that the number of jobs and manufacturing jobs are actually on the rise. 

The federal agency says more than 65,000 people were working in Bibb County in August. That's almost 3,000 jobs more than five years ago.

And this spring, about 6,000 of those people were working in manufacturing fields. That's nearly 800 people more than five years before.

"We're talking about Mr. Chips, we're talking about Yulista Aviation, we're talking about Aspirin Products, we're talking about Graphic Packaging, Kumho Tire," Adams said. "All of these, you know are a series of successes that have led to over 1,800 new and retained jobs."

He says the global and local economy are stronger, boosting local industries. Adams says when trying to land new ones, they have to make sure the Macon-Bibb workforce matches the  industry.

"We work closely with our technical colleges," Adams said. "They're a huge asset in our ability to show new industry and existing industries that we have the workforce."

And he says although the Boeing plant closing will leave more than 100 people without a job, they're prepared to help them and help grow the number of jobs available in Macon-Bibb. The numbers verify that they've had some success.

Adams says the Industrial Authority is working with Boeing, and state and local partner to find opportunities for people losing jobs. He says they're working with local workforce groups to plan a job fair for the Boeing workers.


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