200 positions where you can make a difference hiring now in Lake Jackson area

LAKE JACKSON, Texas (KTRK) -- The Lake Jackson area has been hit hard during the pandemic, and ABC13 is looking to help with a job fair featuring more than 200 positions.

The latest Texas jobs report shows the Lake Jackson area unemployment is at nearly 10 percent. That's one of the highest in the Houston area, and double what the city normally experiences.

A big reason is the pandemic's squeeze on the oil and gas industry.

"It really has had an effect on a lot of the chemical plant industries, and manufacturing that we have in the community," Workforce Solutions officer manager Jessica Douglas explained.

If you're one of those who lost your job during the pandemic, there are employers in the Lake Jackson area hiring.

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Positions are available across multiple industries. These are some examples of how you can make a difference.

"Actually, right now, some of our hot jobs are more for the medical field," Douglas said.

To get there, you might need training. Workforce Solutions is one place where you can learn how to find it.

"Maybe they've been in the refinery for 20 years, and you want to do something different," Douglas said. "We can help them develop employment plans for reaching that goal."

Just one problem -- the new office that opened less than two months ago has been closed to the public.

"I want to open now! People will come up to the door and I'm like, 'Come on in!' But we can't do that yet," Douglas explained.

The good news is you can receive all the services virtually. Online is also how you can get a job.

ABC13 partnered with Workforce Solutions to host a virtual job fair featuring more than 200 jobs. You can watch the entire job fair in the video player above.

To view all of the jobs hiring, visit the Workforce Solutions website, and look for the "as seen on ABC13" section.

Three of the jobs are for Freeport Police Department officers. It's an agency looking for more than a new employee.

"It's definitely a calling," Freeport Police Chief Raymond Garivey explained. "It's an honor to wear the badge. To serve others is what it is."

Garivey said officers are treated like "family," and he expects them to improve the community.

"Take the time to go into one of your stores, and see a kid in there, give them a sticker. Give them a trading card. Let them know that the police are your friends. That's the kind of stuff we teach here," Garivey explained.

He leads by example. Garivey formed a bond with a young girl diagnosed with terminal cancer. He named Abigail an officer, and she became a local celebrity with law enforcement agencies, and Houston athletes.

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See how Officer Abigail touched the lives of thousands across the country.

"We have wings that you can't see, halos above our head," Garivey said. "We're supposed to do that. And I know if I lead by example my guys see that and they want to do that."

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