Federal budget cuts could mean hundreds are out of work in the T - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Federal budget cuts could mean hundreds are out of work in the Tri-State.

The U.S. Department of Labor confirmed Thursday the Earle C. Clements Job Corps. Academy in Morganfield will be cutting down on its student population.

"It's sad, because kids really need it," said former Job Corps. employee Debbie Bourne. "And I think it helps them in some ways."

Job Corps specializes in technical training for young people. Bourne says she doesn't want to see the school downsized, since she believes it truly helps its students lead better lives.

"Some kids don't care," Bourne said. "They just get stuck there because it's, instead of going to jail, they...you know? But I think in the long run it helps a lot of them. you know?"

The U.S. Department of Labor confirmed the Morganfield location will reduce its enrollment by 650 students. Department of Labor representatives remain tight-lipped about the future of employees there, though its website says over 3,100 could lose their jobs, nationwide.

"I had some phone calls, quite a few phone calls last night at home from some folks that, you know, that are employed there that were obviously concerned," said Union County Judge Jody Jenkins.

"I've gotten no official comment from anyone from the Earle C. Clements Academy or anyone outside of there."

Thursday, 14 News spoke to a current employee at Job Corps. He says a staff meeting was held Wednesday, where the student reduction was explained as a 'cost-savings plan.'

And he says he and his fellow employees are unsure and uneasy, about their future with the school.

"It's sad," Bourne said. "It's sad it's happening like this. You know, more people out of work."

The conversation over the changes at Job Corps. appears to be ongoing. So, we will keep you updated, as we learn more.

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