NotesMonthly rates for U.S. is seasonally adjusted. Seasonally adjusted data is not available for metro areas.
by Tamara Keith
January 17, 2011
First of an ongoing series
Until March, Casaundra Bronner, 39, worked for one of the largest and certainly the most famous employers in St. Louis — Anheuser-Busch.
Bronner had been there for 11 years, working her way up to a marketing manager job.
"My last position, I really enjoyed it," says Bronner. "[The layoff was] like a rug taken from under me."
She was among hundreds the company laid off.
Nationwide, there are more than 14 million people out of work, and most economists say it will be years before the country returns to full employment. In terms of the labor market and the unemployment rate, St. Louis, Mo., is very similar to rest of the nation.
Over the next year, NPR will follow Bronner and five others who live in the greater St. Louis area who are currently unemployed as they search for work.
Bronner never thought it would take so long to find a new job. Her search has already spanned nine months and it's taking a financial and emotional toll for Bronner — a single mother with two daughters in elementary school.
"It's difficult because I'm what they have," she says. Her daughters ask why she can't buy them the things she used to be able to.
There is one central goal for each of the St. Louis area residents NPR is following — to work.
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