ROCK HILL, S.C. -- North Carolina's unemployment rate dropped slightly in October from 10.5 to 10.4 percent, and that means more than 450,000 people are still looking for work.
In South Carolina, there is a bigger difference as 10.9 percent of people out of work fell to 10.5 percent.
Still, more than 200,000 people need a job, and the unemployment offices are regularly packed.
Teri Karlsons is back at Rock Hill's unemployment office--again.
“I’ll take anything, just anything, anything that I can get,” she said.
She's been looking for work for two years. Like many in York County, the single mom went back to school to learn a new trade, but even that's been a dead end.
“I’m going to school right now, but everybody’s going to school and the jobs just aren’t out there,” she added. “I just got a certificate in September, human services. I’m having to go again to another program because there are still no jobs.”
She heard the county's unemployment numbers went down but doesn’t believe it.
Christine Turner, meanwhile, runs the Rock Hill unemployment office and says the office is always full–and has been for years now.
“We are still seeing a lot of people coming into the office. There are a lot of people that are suffering. There’s a lot of hardship and people have to adjust to a different income level,” Turner said.
She says it’s too early to notice that York County's unemployment numbers went down more than two percent, but she says the numbers are moving in the right direction.
“Yes, most definitely there is a glimmer of hope, always looking for those little glimmers of hope because we have a lot of people that want to work.”
Ivory Purnell had been looking for work for more than two years when the security company that handles Turner’s office at the unemployment center needed help. She knew just the person. She said Purnell’s persistence made it clear he would be a good worker.
“He was definitely one of those individuals and we knew the security company we use was looking for people so it was a perfect match,” Turner said.
“I just kept pressing forward and believing that something would come through and it did, and I’m very happy with it,” Purnell said. “Since I started working here I see a lot of people coming in frustrated. I let them know I was in your position before.”