Chester County jobs forum tonight

Chester County educators and business leaders will share tips tonight about what to do when you lose your job.

Titled "I'm out of work, now what?" the event will be held at the Chester Middle School auditorium from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

The timing for the event is critical, local leaders say. Chester County is tied for the third-highest unemployment rate in the state. More than 4,000 jobs have left the county since 2002.

The forum was organized as The Herald gathered information for a December series about the county's unemployment woes. Leaders say many area agencies that help the unemployed are underutilized and, because of budget constraints, don't advertise their offerings enough.

Tonight's forum will focus on what displaced workers need to do to prepare for another career. Experts will offer information on educational options and discuss what kind of training is needed and how much it will cost. The program also will include résumé-building tips.

Additionally, local advisers will explain how to protect investments, including a home, vehicle and 401(k) plans.

Among the groups participating are the Chester County Workforce Development Center, Founders Federal Credit Union, Fort Lawn Community Center and Chester County Literacy Council.