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NJBIA President & CEO Michele Siekerka says New Jersey businesses, especially those that depend on the busy summer tourism season, are still struggling to find workers despite the state’s 7.3% unemployment rate.

In an interview with Channel 6 Action News, Siekerka and  Morey’s Piers Vice President Denise Beckson, said staffing shortages still persist and are forcing many employers to reduce operating hours or close down completely. Enhanced unemployment benefits, which the goverment will continue to provide through Sept. 4, are incentivizing people to stay home instead of go back to work, they said.

“I have a message for New Jersey’s workforce … our companies need you and they want you to come back to work,” Siekerka said.

Action News reporter Dann Ceullar asked Siekerka about complaints from business operators who say that people fail to show up for scheduled job interviews because they are only interested in showing that they applied for jobs in order to maintain their unemployment benefits.

“Anyone who is gaming the system needs to know that the Department of Labor can catch up with you and can claw back that money,” Siekerka said.

To read the entire Channel 6 Action News story go here, or click on the link below.