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Teen unemployment at lowest levels in decades

Updated: Jun. 10, 2021 at 11:25 AM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO 8 ) - “Help Wanted”

It’s a sign of the times, even at Scoopers in Sparks, where the lines start early for burgers and shakes.

For teenager Joshua Conde this is the first time he’s brought home a paycheck. The job he says is as cool as the shakes he serves up.

“It’s pretty chill,” says Joshua. “I like everyone here. They are all pretty helpful. And we work as a group too. We all talk and communicate I like that,” he says. Teamwork, responsibility, dealing with the public all experiences a first job affords. And apparently teens are taking a chance and applying where those help wanted signs are posted.

Teen unemployment is down to 9% percent, 8% in Nevada. That’s down from nearly 25%t from one year ago. “We are battling,” says Shawn Richards, owner of Scoopers. “It’s nothing we haven’t done before. But like I said it’s a little more of a struggle than it has been ever,” he says. Richards says like most employers, he’s having trouble finding employees--teens or otherwise.

While there is plenty of speculation why some adults aren’t coming back to work, for teens it appears they have options like never before.

Teen unemployment rates have not been this low since the 1940s

Shawn says with summer coming up and a bent-up desire to get outside, he’d like to extend his hours. But that would require four more employees.

He’d like to hire some teens, but he knows the competition for them is fierce.

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