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Workforce Update from Workforce Solutions of West Texas

Unemployment Data

Key demographics of individuals approved to receive Unemployment Insurance as of April 10, 2020 are as follows:

  • Individuals ages 20 – 29 years comprise 56% of claimants

  • Females represent 53% of all claimants

  • Whites represent 60% of claimants; Blacks represent 7% of claimants and Hispanics represent 28% of claimants

  • Individuals with a high school education/GED represent 42% of claimants and individuals with some college represent 33% of claimants. Individuals with an associate degree or higher represent 11% of claimants.

Current UI data through Saturday, April 11 reflects an increase of 814 claimants over the prior week.

Employer Services

  • To date, 1909 employers in the region have reported either temporary or permanent layoffs.

  • JOBS NOW, the on-line webpage that connects employers needing workers now to interested individuals includes 234 different jobs from employers in 15 of the 19 counties. Jobs Now allows job seekers to directly connect to employers without additional registration requirements. Through April 12, a total of 733 employers have been contacted to assess their hiring needs and provide workforce assistance.

  • Of special interest to employers: If an employee is offered an opportunity to return to work to their same position and refuses to do so because they prefer to collect Unemployment Insurance benefits, employers may report this information to the Texas Workforce Commission at: or by calling 1-800-252-3642.

Job-Seeker Services

  • Between March 1 and April 12, workforce staff responded to over 1,100 calls from job-seekers with 90% of those related to Unemployment Insurance questions.

  • Over 300 live chat sessions via the website have occurred since March 26.

  • Since March 30, five Facebook Live events have been held with a total of 142 attendees.

Child Care Services

  • Governor Abbott announced a new resource for essential workers seeking care or providers who are able to provide care through Individuals may access at no cost for the next three months.

  • Based on self-reports of child care providers to Child Care Licensing 31 of our 97 (32%) contracted child care providers are temporarily closed as of April 12. Overall, 59 of the 151 (39%) of reporting providers in the region are closed as of April 12. Of the 19 counties, only Knox County is without access to a contracted provider through Workforce Solutions.

  • Actual attendance of children at centers is averaging 52% for those centers that remain open.

  • Child care centers are now limited to serving only children of essential workers and children referred through protective services.

  • Essential workers may apply to receive no-cost services at a licensed provider, who is willing to contract with Workforce Solutions. Applications may be completed and submitted online at: As of April 12, we’ve received 120 applications.

If you have any questions or need additional information regarding any of these items, please feel free to contact us at You may also reach out directly to Mary Ross, Executive Director, at 325-795-4301 or via email at:

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