Lionel Lightbourne has been a social worker in Liberty City for four years. He says he is a "fish in water" with his chosen profession. He speaks with passion about empowering families and children in need.
If he were single, he says his income would put him just above the poverty line. "But together with my wife," he says, "we will actually be in the middle class."
South Florida saw no major changes in the latest unemployment numbers. But the best news this month goes to the construction industry, which had the largest increase in job numbers. Over 43,000 construction jobs were added over the past year -- more than any other state in the country.
Ken Simonson, chief economist for the Associated General Contractors of America, says some of the increase has to do with a backlog of construction jobs that were stalled during the 2008 recession.
Students awarded bachelor degrees at Florida International University and Florida Atlantic University had the highest median earnings in the state, according to a new report from the Florida Department of Education.
And graduates of Broward College, Florida Keys Community College and Miami Dade College tended to earn more than graduates completing associate degrees at other state colleges.
Tuesday morning was one of the few times fast-food workers publicly protested lower wages in Miami, joining the dozens of cities that hosted protesters back in December. The protest coincided with the release of a new study from FIU's Research Institute of Social and Economic Policy which, among other things, looks at the intersection of low-paying jobs and wage theft.
Felecia Hatcher is on a mission. She wants to bridge the tech education gap in Florida's schools and give underserved students the chance to become web-based entrepreneurs. She started the program Code Fever last year to reach that goal.
"Technology will allow [the students] to build their businesses and catapult their ideas much faster and definitely much cheaper," Hatcher says.
The discount grocery store Aldi is opening up four new locations in South Florida: Palm Springs, Deerfield Beach, Hialeah and Miami Gardens. In order to staff those locations, the discount grocer is holding hiring fairs throughout the area on Jan. 15 and 16.
Though it looks like a typical grocery store on the outside, a few things inside might throw you off your shopping routine. The first thing you’ll probably do is try to grab a cart. At Aldi, you have to rent it. The $.25 asking price isn’t much, but it's one of the many differences between this and any other grocery store.
Ask your boss if she likes this story. With the right software she could be monitoring every key stroke and screen shot of your company-issued smart phone or computer. Every single day. Every word you say.
Recent protests across the country were aimed at doubling the federal minimum wage. In Florida the minimum wage will go up on Jan. 1, but not nearly by that much. Each year, the state’s minimum wage is automatically increased based on inflation. WLRN-Miami Herald reporter Kenny Malone has more details:
The healthcare deduction for Miami-Dade County employees stays put. Commissioners failed by one vote to overturn Mayor Carlos Gimenez's veto on union workers' pay.
That means most county employees will continue to contribute 5 percent of their base pay toward group healthcare instead of getting that money restored as of Jan. 1, as commissioners had supported two weeks ago.
Chairwoman Rebeca Sosa switched her vote, saying she could not endorse eliminating the healthcare contribution if it could lead to employee layoffs.
Gov. Rick Scott helped Hertz break ground last month on the rental car company’s new corporate headquarters. Hertz is relocating to Estero, FL from New Jersey, creating an anticipated 700 jobs in the state.