AMARILLO, Texas (KVII) — During the month of August, the City of Amarillo recorded one of the lowest unemployment rates in the state of Texas with a rate of three percent.
“Amarillo is really in a historic season of economic growth,” said Mayor Nelson when asked what the status of Amarillo’s economic growth.
On Tuesday, Oct. 4 business leaders and Mayor Nelson met for a summit to discuss the issues of the Amarillo job market.
The growing market has led to new jobs, but the Amarillo community is not filling these open positions.
One of the issues that employers are facing is that mothers and mothers in childcare services cannot go to work and childcare services are having trouble finding employees.
“Seventy-five percent of our childcare workers are women. If they cannot find childcare for their own children, they cannot come to work to care for other people's children," Keralee Clay, the Senior Vice President of Amarillo Area Foundation said. "So, we must find that as a systemic It is a systemic issue that we have to address head-on.”
She also felt another solution to getting mothers back into the workforce was business owners should offer potential employees flexible hours and scheduling, advance release scheduling, and backup childcare.
At Tyson Foods, they have a shift that runs from 3 p.m. to midnight. Most childcare centers around the area close at 6 p.m. making it hard for mothers to leave young children at home or even go to work if they have infants.
“And so when people are your greatest asset you have to you cannot just say you care about them. You must show them you care about them,” Jason McCoy, the Community Liaison of Tyson Foods of Amarillo said.
Tyson Foods showed its appreciation by partnering with Maverick and Wesley Community Center to have them stay open until 1 a.m. for parents on the 3 p.m. to midnight shift.
Tyson even created programs to help employees' work lives be more manageable.
“We have a chaplaincy program and we have a transportation program that if you're having a hard time getting to work, we'll go get you and bring you back. To take You Home,” said McCoy.
With inflation though, money is the number one concern for many people in Amarillo.
Some local businesses have boosted their minimum wage to $15 per hour and are trying to create benefit packages to help the well-being of their employees.