Geneva, Ala. (WDHN)While unemployment claims are on the rise due to COVID, some small businesses in the wiregrass are encountering a different issue.
Family-owned Magnolia Market in Geneva is one of the numerous businesses with
“help wanted” signs on its doors.
The business has openings for numerous positions, but few folks are applying.
Unemployment benefits from the “Cares Act” continue to come in, and stimulus checks
are also making it to homes. The Magnolia Market manager, Lester Hildreth, says many folks feel they don’t have to work at this time.
“And we go through our applications bi-weekly and see if we have anybody still interested. We find either their phone has
been disconnected, or they just don’t answer anymore,” according to Hildreth.
Nearly all the cashiers and stockers at the store are area high school students. The business attempts
to work around their schedules. One Enterprise High School sophomore, Laura McCall, says
many of her friends have “no” interest in going to work.
” I just think it’s not really hard to work and anybody can work. You’re all for it? ya,” according to McCall.
Hildreth says “we got high schoolers that come in and work, and we got their proms and activities football, baseball, and work around their
schedules to help them out.”
Several folks that we spoke with said the real issue is stimulus checks along with extended unemployment resulting in
folks simply not wanting to work.