Worker shortage should ease in 2022 as COVID wanes. But many people have permanently stopped working, depressing labor force participation
Several obstacles have kept Christina Lugo out of the job market since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Houston-area resident, a former oil and gas industry recruiter who lost her job just before the health crisis, has been gearing up for a career change to loan officer. During the past two years, she has been relying on extra savings from stimulus checks and enhanced unemployment benefits to make ends meet. And she has been taking care of her 3-year-old son.