Chase Bank sponsors job fair in Boyle Heights, says it wants 200 new workers from around LA

Boyle Heights Job Fair

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Loretta Garcia, a human resources specialist with UPS, shakes hands with a job seeker. UPS was hiring for positions in warehouse logistics. There's a seven- to eight-year wait to become a driver who is paid approximately $17 an hour, she said.

Boyle Heights Job Fair

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Judith Gelman, a special agent with the FBI in charge of recruiting, speaks with job seekers at the Boyle Heights Job Fair on Tuesday, April 3.

Boyle Heights Job Fair

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Randall Wilson scans a map of the job fair where dozens of companies and organizations came to meet with hundreds of applicants on Tuesday, April 3.

Boyle Heights Job Fair

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Job seekers line up outside the Puente Job Center between the 101 and 5 freeways in Boyle Heights Tuesday, April 3.

Boyle Heights Job Fair

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Volunteers from the Los Angeles Conservation Corps stand watch at the main entrance to Puente Learning Center in Boyle Heights on Tuesday, April 3.

Boyle Heights Job Fair

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Nimo Mathenge and Adele Wilson speak with job seekers at a job fair in Boyle Heights on Tuesday, April 3. Their organization, Streetlights, promotes ethnic diversity in the entertainment industry.

Boyle Heights Job Fair

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The line outside the Boyle Heights Job Fair on Tuesday, April 3.

Boyle Heights Job Fair

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Lisa Chang (right) seeks out clients that might take on people from her employer, the Asian American Drug Abuse Program. She spoke with Josie Allen-Choate.

Boyle Heights Job Fair

Grant Slater/KPCC

Chase Bank sponsored the Boyle Heights Soars Job Fair along with more than a dozen community non-profits in the neighborhood. More than 500 people pre-registered to speak with 36 potential employers.


Veterans, young professionals and seniors all descended on a Boyle Heights job fair Tuesday when word got out it was sponsored by Chase Bank.

Chase says it’s looking to hire 200 workers in Boyle Heights and other areas throughout Los Angeles where unemployment is high.

The lender has taken flack from critics who say Chase unfairly kicks low-income people out of their homes when they have trouble paying their mortgages.

“We will commit $7 million over the next three years to nonprofit work here in Boyle Heights," said Chase spokesman Gary Kishner, emphasizing the bank's more positive efforts.

“Last year, we gave about $66 million to nonprofits," he continued. "That includes homes so that they could create affordable housing, that includes grants to nonprofits so that they could provide education within the schools. We are committed to the communities.”

Travis Burnham of Venice has been looking for work ever since he returned from Iraq, and the vet shook plenty of hands with Chase people and other prospective employers at the job fair.

It’s been difficult, especially considering Burnham has had some problems with the law.

“Never had a criminal history before that," he said. "When I came back, I got into some trouble and I’m clearing that up now."

Professional counseling has, according to Burnham, helped prepare him to reenter the job market.

Companies like UPS, Staples Center, Vons, Starbucks and Target are reviewing Burnham’s resume — and hundreds of others.

But, according to the fair's organizers, there are hundreds of jobs to go around.

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