Veterans targeted at Olathe job fair

OLATHE, Kan. - About 1,400 Kansas City metro jobseekers are hoping Wednesday is the day they'll land a new career.

They packed a banquet hall at the Great Mall of the Great Plains in Olathe for a large job fair, arranged by Kansas Congressman Kevin Yoder.

While everyone was invited to the job fair, the focus is on getting those who served on the front lines for our country back to work.

The stories are easy to relate to with so many of our neighbors, friends and relatives searching for work.

One jobseeker, Stan fleming, served in the Army for four years. Then he worked for the post office for 25 years, before they asked him to retire.

Now Fleming says he's back on the job market, trying to make ends meet. He's unsuccessfully attended more than a dozen job fairs and is still looking for work.

Fleming isn't alone. Thousands of men and women who fought for our country are now finding themselves fighting to pay bills.

"I'm even more distraught now because we have men and women, veterans who really fought for our country overseas and risked their lives," Fleming said. "And it's tough for them to come back and find work. I see my veteran brothers and sisters on the street homeless and it gets me really depressed and discouraged sometimes."

However, one company has an encouraging story to tell. Hatch Staffing, which hires and appoints full and part time employees for hundreds of metro companies, is looking to hire more than 100 people on the spot. At the Great Mall of The Great Plains job fair alone, they hired 93 people last year.

Recruiters with Hatch say they love hiring attendees at job fairs because they're able to meet applicants face-to-face and review their resumes on the spot.

Hatch Staffing Recruiter Soroosh Noori says he looks for jobseekers who seek opportunity.

"It's a stepping stool, actually more like a ladder," Noori said. "In today's workforce, you have to build yourself up. You have to be positive and open minded. You never know what you'll find and you might end up liking it."

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