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Helping those in need

We all know that a significant aspect of our country relates to industry, whether it is the steel, coal, railroad or a variety of others. The same is absolutely true for our community and the Tri-State.

For Lawrence, Scioto, Jackson and Gallia counties in Ohio, along with the surrounding counties of Boyd and Greenup in Kentucky, and Cabell and Wayne in West Virginia, we are by and large defined through those industries.

About a decade and a half ago, for many of the cities, villages and townships the impact of losing those jobs were felt when places like Intermet-Ironton Iron shut down, Cabletron closed and hundreds were looking for a job.

Fast forward and you see that changing regulations and other factors have caused us to once again realize that pain within the past year of more than 1,000 people being laid off or relocating to other states as a result of companies like AK Steel idling the Ashland, Kentucky, location and CSX railroad making changes at their Huntington, West Virginia, and Russell, Kentucky, sites.

I am a firm believer that our area can once again be an industry leader in a variety of areas, and some strides have been made with locations like The Point industrial park in South Point and locations in Ironton being cleaned up, but unfortunately there are still hundreds looking at what might be next for them and their families. Some have been able to transition to other jobs, but many are still looking.

Several weeks ago I began to think about what we, The Tribune, can do to help. One of the major roles of this newspaper in my view is to continue to be a strong community partner as we have for more than a century. So I began thinking about ways we can help those still looking for other opportunities throughout the Tri-State, and the one I kept coming back to was getting their message out to those companies who might be looking to hire.

Beginning April 25, The Tribune will offer free job wanted ads in our classifieds section of our three daily editions of the newspaper along with our weekly shopper product and on our website for those individuals who have been laid off from AK Steel and CSX.

If you are a resident of the Tri-State that has been affected, you are eligible to place this ad for free. The ad will run free for 30 days in all three of those products and will include eight lines to provide your contact information, your qualifications and what type of job you are seeking.

There will be a requirement that you come into our office at 2903 S. Fifth St. in Ironton during our normal business hours from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday to place the ad with our classified ad department. You can also contact the classified ad department and ask for Shirley Watson or Bonita Creger with any questions beginning April 25.

If you want to become a part of this project as a sponsor, please contact me at josh.morrison@irontontribune.com or at 740-532-1441 ext. 24. Or, you can contact advertising director Shawn Randolph at shawn.randolph@irontontribune.com or at 740-532-1441 ext. 29 for more information on how to become involved.

I know many people personally who have been impacted, and I know there are several hundred others around the region potentially looking for work.

Do I think this is a magic pill that will get everyone back to work? Absolutely not. But I do think at the end of the day, working together as a Tri-State will hopefully move us in the right direction for a booming future.