It is no secret that 2016 has been a roller coaster ride for Houston’s petroleum industry. Since the middle of 2014, the price of oil has fallen and recovery remains elusive, causing a lack of confidence in the job market and slow growth. The impact of this data is acutely felt in diverse communities throughout the Gulf Coast region.

“Industries like oil and construction are driving forces in the labor market in Gulf States like Louisiana and Texas,” said Dr. Julianne Malveaux, a nationally recognized labor economist and a former college president. …

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