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Laid-off employees look for work as coronavirus shutters businesses

COVID-19 closes some Hampton Roads businesses, leaving people looking for work.

NORFOLK, Va. — The coronavirus has caused several Hampton Roads businesses to close for two weeks or more. 

Tidewater Community College student Nicole Hawkins is working on getting her nursing degree and was working two jobs to pay the bills. The coronavirus forced her employers to close their doors until restrictions are lifted. 

“They’re going to be going online which is a little difficult due to me being in some science courses that have labs so we won’t be able to go into those. Also with work yesterday we were told it is to be announced when we were going to come back. So I won’t be able to work at both my jobs right now,” said Hawkins. 

Hawkins explained it's been tough finding a new job.

“I really don’t know what to do right now? So I went on the Virginia unemployment website last night and it crashed on me and I tried to get back on today and it was super slow as well,” she said.

Hawkins is not the only employee out of a job due to COVID-19. Hampton Roads Reliance Staffing helps employees and employers get jobs and find great hires. Branch manager Rob Lankford pointed out business owners are hiring. 

“We’re experiencing a lot of candidates like you mentioned that are getting laid off through the hospitality or working a restaurant that was closed down for two weeks. Absolutely, those candidates we want coming through our front doors and we have jobs for you,” said Lankford. 

Lankford mentioned in this time of COVID-19 social distancing they can conduct interviews on the computer with employers.

The Virginia Employment Commission office is also closed. They posted some guidelines for people out of a job because of the coronavirus

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