Rodney Booker said, “I stood in line for four hours. They better give me a Wal-Mart gift card, or something.”
Job seeker Keyonya Mills was frustrated by the miscommunication.
“They could have said, go online, fill out the application. If you do not know how to fill out a application, come to Kennedy-King College and we’ll train you. They have people wrapped around this entire building thinking this is a job fair and this is not a job fair”, Mills said.
Michael Williams compared the job fair to standing in a soup line, only to find out there’s no soup.
“This isn’t really a job fair, it’s just a meet-and-greet,” he said. “It’s nothing, they’re just telling you what’s going on with their business, but they’re not really receiving any applications, or any résumés. It’s nothing.”
Williams had even dressed in a suit and tie to make a good impression, hoping for at least a preliminary job interview, but said all the effort simply went to waste.
“I tried to dress for the part, you know, just to make a good impression, but you don’t have to make an impression in there. They’re just telling you mumbo jumbo.”
Mayor Rahm Emanuel made an unannounced visit to the job fair, and was approached by some frustrated job hunters.
“Excuse me Mr. Mayor, I have a question. I came down here, I stood in line for four hours, expecting to get a job interview, or fill out an application. And I stood in line for four hours to get a flyer telling me to go online,” one woman in line complained.
The mayor later addressed reporters about the situation.
“The reason there’s frustration is not for the two to three hours here, it’s for the two to three years they’ve been waiting [for a job],” he said. “My goal was to get us organized … our job is to help people find a job. Even if we don’t have it, to get them organized.”
The mayor also said he spoke to some people in line who appreciated the help they did get at the job fair.