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      Unemployment tougher for those with criminal backgrounds

      The unemployment rate is still high.

      In the Valley the unemployment rate is at about 10.3% as of December 2012.

      In this competitive market it TMs a fight for survival.

      "Once they've got that black mark against them, it just becomes almost impossible for them to get employment" Chief of the Derrell Hester Detention Center Tommy Ramirez said.

      Can you imagine competing with over qualified and other applicants, that don TMt have any red flags in their history?

      Ramirez said that TMs what most of his kids go through when facing the job market.

      "With such a competitive market they even become pushed even further down on the hierarchy of who you consider to hire," Ramirez said.

      A 16 year old cadet that TMs at the Derrell Hester Detention Center in San Benito that TMs going through boot camp said he's never worked before.

      He says he barely went to school, living a carefree life. Now since he's been in the detention center he's been working on earning his diploma and aspires for a better life.

      "Being a drop out working in other places I would like to work in bigger places other a fast food restaurant," Cadet said.

      He said his life has changed a lot, he knows when he gets out he will have to compete for a job.

      He said it TMs time for him to change now and get my head straight, Cadet said.

      Getting a GED is a top priority, the next step would be job readiness.

      David Sanchez Boot Camp Administrator said they do everything they can to prepare the juveniles for the workforce industry.

      He said they offer a job readiness class, it includes having mock interviews to help them be more confident.

      We've been blessed here in Cameron County that there are employers that are willing to give our kids an opportunity Sanchez said.

      He said they try to give them everything they need to stand out when applying for a job.

      The cadet said he knows he has to stay positive and motivated and prepare for the best.

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