Unemployment Rate in Washington Stays the Same Two Months in a Row - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Unemployment Rate in Washington Stays the Same Two Months in a Row

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KENNEWICK, Wash.-- The latest numbers from the Employment Security Department showed an unemployment rate of 9.1% for March and April.

While that's some pretty good news, economists warn it doesn't mean the numbers will go down soon.

The numbers also show 9,900 people in Washington lost their jobs last month. In Kennewick you may remember Harley Grinder, standing on the corner of Clearwater Avenue and 395 looking for a job.

We see him again on May 19th, and he's still looking.

"There's so many people looking, there's not many employers hiring, and the ones that are hiring they get twice as many applications as any other time," said Grinder.

Grinder says he'll never forget the day he lost his job, last March on Friday the 13th. Since then he's had to leave his house because he can't make the rent.

"It's really down to the wire now, kind of rock bottom, so out of my house, I keep my car so I can get back and forth to work when I get a job," said Grinder.

All his things are packed in a storage unit, and for now he's crashing on friends couches trying not to be a burden.

Like Harley, still out of luck and looking is Diane Medick. Medick says she's been at WorkSource every day since she lost her job at the end of January, and still no luck.

"It's a job to look for a job, I'll tell you that," said Medick.

Diane says she's open to the idea of moving away if the job is right.

"One of these times it's going to be that good story you're going to say remember Diane, she got a job, haha," said Medick.

It's the same positive attitude that moves Harley every day.

Both Harley and Diane are among the 217,000 people receiving unemployment benefits in Washington.

In Benton County the unemployment rate in April was at 7.5%. In Franklin county 9%. Both lower than the state average of 9.1%

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