Working In The Commonwealth: Recession Hits Older Workers Hard

By Mary Blake, WBZ NewsRadio 1030

BOSTON (CBS) – The “Great Recession” has taken a heavy toll on the mature worker.

Statistics compiled by the Sloan Center on Aging and Work at Boston College show it takes older workers out of work a longer period of time to get job interviews and job offers.

Also See: Working In The Commonwealth – Parts 1 & 2

Catherin Bertulli of Melrose is living the nightmare. A professional high-end carpet designer for 23 years, Bertulli was laid off two years ago and has been job hunting ever since.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030′s Mary Blake reports.

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“Losing your job is devastating to who you are, ” she says.

Bertulli says she’s willing to settle for much less now. She says she is currently looking positions that include administrative assistant, receptionist and office coordinator.

“I can interact really well with people and I like a fast-paced environment. I am a good worker and I’m loyal,” says Bertulli.

Operation A.B.L.E. of Greater Boston has worked with Bertulli in her job search. Operation A.B.L.E’s mission is to find jobs for the mature worker.

The organization helped Paula Davis find her job. Davis is the Permit Coordnator for Next Step Living in South Boston, a home performance contracting company.

“It was such a relief to know that I now had a full time job. I was nearly at the point of homelessness, and I am truly grateful to Next Step Living,” Davis said.

Young workers have been hit hard in this recession, too. Mark Smolinski is a 2009 business graduate from Michigan State University.

“Only one out of five members of my class had a job after graduation. My first job out of college was as a janitor at a sports club,” Smolinski says.

Smolinski is now the business manager at the mobile computing company Nellymoser.

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