Fla. Job Center Criticized for Passing Out Capes to Unemployed

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Florida officials are investigating an unemployment agency that spent public money to give 6,000 superhero capes to the jobless.

Workforce Central Florida spent more than $14,000 on the red capes as part of its "Cape-A-Bility Challenge" public relations campaign. The $73,000 campaign features a cartoon character "Dr. Evil Unemployment" who needs to be vanquished.

Florida's unemployment agency director asked Monday for the investigation of the regional operation's spending after the Orlando Sentinel wrote a story about the program. State director Cynthia Lorenzo said the spending appeared to be "insensitive and wasteful."

Workforce Central Florida Director Gary J. Earl defends the program, saying it's part of an effort to connect with the community. The agency says it served 210,000 people during its last fiscal year, putting almost 59,000 into jobs.