Mother of 11 cannot find work, close to eviction

Mother of 11 struggling to find work, close to eviction

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A mother of 11 who was laid off before Christmas is unable to find work and is facing eviction.

“If I had family to go to -- like immediate family -- I’d go and ask them, but I don’t have any immediate family,” said Jessica Sumlin. “It’s just me and my kids.”

The Mid-South mother said she is about to be evicted because she can’t find work.

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It’s a harsh reality many people in Memphis are experiencing in recent months as several companies have announced layoffs that are carrying over into the new year.

Sumlin’s was laid just off days before Christmas, a story that is similar to hundreds of families across the Mid-South.

She’s a single mother applying for jobs while the bills pile up and available jobs fill up.

“I’ve been filling out job applications, going places and everything is just piling up,” she said.

Making ends meet for Sumlin and her 11 children is nearly impossible right now.

The Whitehaven mother left her job after 12 years at Taco Bell because she had a high-risk pregnancy.

She found a temporary job in November, but was laid off five days before Christmas.

“I went to work that day and I didn’t know I was let go,” Sumlin said. “When I had got to the gate, my badge didn’t work, and I was wondering why my badge didn’t work.”

That’s when she learned her seasonal job was cut short.

Sumlin said she thinks she was let go because she didn’t have transportation, which made it tough to get to work.

She spent about $20 a day for Uber.

“I’m just doing what I can for me and my kids, but right now my bills have overwhelmed me,” she said.

Earlier this month, we reviewed closure notices reported to the state and we found out there were 1,680 layoffs in Shelby County.

Jessica Sumlin, a Tennessee mother of 11, was laid off before Christmas, cannot find work and is facing eviction.
Jessica Sumlin, a Tennessee mother of 11, was laid off before Christmas, cannot find work and is facing eviction. (Fox13Memphis.com/Fox13Memphis.com)