Herein lies a rant. Don’t say you weren’t warned.
The other night on the news there were two stories which annoyed me – obviously enough I’m still thinking about them. One story was about the juvenile prison which had five employees attacked over the weekend. The story was all about the how they have a hard time keeping employees.
The other story was about the DA in Dane county announcing they are no longer going to be able to prosecute all crimes due to a shortage of employees, i.e. prosecutors.
Both of these stories hit a note with me. I’ve worked for the State of Wisconsin since 2006. I’ve liked my jobs and the people I work with. The different departments I’ve worked for have been interesting and like most jobs there were great things and not so great things. Then 2010 rolled around.
In 2010, the governor basically said state employees were bankrupting the state and they were horrible people. This started a war against state employees. For a time insurance cost more, before it became a political move to lower the cost of our insurance. But instead of the state covering what they used to, they changed the insurance so there are more co-pays, more deductibles, and more money out of my pockets.
Public service employees are typically paid less but the benefits used to be some of the best. Now the pay is mediocre and the benefits are getting too costly.
Back to the two stories, why would someone work for an organization which vilifies its employees? Why would you accept a job which has mediocre pay when you can make more in the private sector? The reason the government can’t fill the positions is because the top people have made working for the state a bad deal. There’s a disrespect for the ethics of the employees.
If you want employees who will stick, you have to provide them with good wages and benefits, as well as a safe work environment. If you aren’t providing these things, you aren’t going to get quality employees who are willing to stay. To our top government officials, get your heads out of your asses, stop helping the rich and start doing what you’re supposed – representing EVERYONE in the state, not just the rich.
I’m feeling a lot stressed out tonight. I get all sorts of emails from my union and other political places and I try to be very conservative about what I pass on. Today one of the things I got from my union was a link state employees can go to plug in their gross income and then answer questions about union status and insurance. It will tell you how much you might lose from your check if this goes through.
Someone who is good at math do the math for me. Okay I’ve already done the math. I’m losing 11% of my income. In one check I’ll be losing nearly $200 in the other I’ll be losing about $65. This is on top of the 3% they are already taking for the furlough days.
On top of this possible loss of funds, I’m looking at a strong possibility of being laid off because I’m still on probation. The governor said today that layoff notice will go out tomorrow afternoon to 1500 workers who will have to be cut. You only get like 65% of your income on unemployment right?
Then I look at the pump and gas just keeps going up and up. It was $3.43 a gallon yesterday and they are calling for it to be nearly $5 a gallon before summer.
On the news tonight I heard that our city is looking at having to up either taxes or fees because of the cut to the recycling program proposed by Walker’s budget. This doesn’t address the nearly $300,000+ that the school district is losing (not sure on that number)
All I can see is money out of my pocket. I’m trying to meet my bills and stay on top of things but at this point I don’t know if I will be able to.
It doesn’t help that most of this is just a what if thing. Will I get laid off? Will I lose 11% of my income? Will fees and/or taxes go up in the city? Will gas prices go up? If gas prices go up will food prices go up? How many will end up unemployed?
I guess the question becomes will there be a second job available for me when I need it?