AN INCREASING number of unemployed people have given up looking for work on the Coast, apparently believing the situation has become hopeless.
That's the grim picture painted by the owner of a leading job placement agency, who says there has been a noticeable decline in the number of people keen to put in the effort required to find work.
Peta Simpson, of New Staff Solutions, said a survey of job-seeking candidates had found they were giving up hope, believing the barriers they faced were insurmountable.
"For some people its ageism - people think they're too old," Ms Simpson said. "As a generalisation, if you're unemployed it now takes you six months to get a new job. If you're over 45, it could take you 12 months.
"But for every age group there are advantages and disadvantages. The person who gets the job will be the one who fits best into the team."
Her comments came as new figures showed the number of skilled workers leaving the Coast to work in the mines had jumped sixfold in less than four years - from 1500 in 2009 to 10,000 today.
With the Coast's unemployment rate sitting at 8.8%, Ms Simpson said she was baffled why people weren't willing to put in the effort.
A workshop she has organised to prepare people for the job hunt had attracted next-to-no interest.
So far only three people have registered for the How to Get the Job workshop, and Ms Simpson can't understand why.
"For us it is about helping people and the fact that only three people are taking up the opportunity, well, I'm a little bit stumped," she said.
"If a workshop of this nature is not of interest to those struggling to secure employment, I wonder what is?"
The workshop is designed to arm jobseekers with the tools, skills and techniques they need to job hunt with confidence.
Topics to be covered include resume and job application writing skills, interview techniques and educating candidates about the recruitment process.
"It's pointing to a new trend that maybe jobseekers have gotten used to an idea that there aren't any jobs and when there are jobs, they aren't ready," Ms Simpson said.
"But there is so much to be hopeful about. We have big projects about to be delivered. I would really love for our community to position ourselves and capitalise. We can have real opportunities."
The workshop will be held on Friday. Book on 5451 1108 or firstname.lastname@example.org.