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Employment shortages cause issues with school food shortages

Employment shortages cause issues with school food shortages

PaulWilliams_rapekit

There is a pay shortage, not an employee shortage.


PapaSlurms

No, there's definitely an employee shortage at the moment. Short port workers, truck drivers, warehouse workers, couriers, etc. Most of these positions pay well above a living wage, which is only around like $14/hr in Missouri.


victrasuva

It's really a mix of both. Lots of people retired last year and we still don't know how many people were displaced. So, people moving and retiring has really hurt many industries, especially hospitality. But, people also want/need flexibility and higher pay. Lots of people are choosing gig work due to the flexibility of the hours and of course many people want to work from home. It's going to be interesting to watch how this changes the workforce. There isn't really one single thing that explains the current struggles companies are facing trying to hire people.


jdavi2112

Yes I agree with the retirement as well. I saw quite a few individuals with my company who were aiming at another 3 years or so go ahead and call it quits early with the circumstances


PapaSlurms

>It's really a mix of both. Lots of people retired last year and we still don't know how many people were displaced I 100% believe this is the issue. There were LOADS of 55+ employees staying on for the heck of it. LOADS of people who were already retired, but picked up shifts at random places to stay busy. All have left the workforce, because it's just not worth it for them anymore. Don't particularly blame them either, because it really was just a side hustle for many.


victrasuva

Completely agree. I definitely don't blame anyone for retiring....ever. I hope to join that group one day.


PaulWilliams_rapekit

But are they paying what that work is worth? No.


PapaSlurms

And what evidence do you have to support your theory? Because a lack of workers across ALL industries hints at an employee shortage, and not a pay issue.


PaulWilliams_rapekit

If you have to pay for childcare in order to go and work then you have to be able to pay someone else to watch your kids and then still on top of that make that $14 an hour that you were talking about. What you're seeing is people realizing that it's cheaper to stay home and watch their own kids sometimes then it is to take a bus driver job for $14 an hour or some other bullshit job where they still have to pay somebody else to watch their fucking kids. People have to be paid more to take these jobs, and these jobs need to come with benefits and child care.. It's a wage issue because people find it to not be overall profitable to take these shitty fucking jobs.


PapaSlurms

Okay.... So a tiny portion of the working population has this issue. This wouldn't cause shortages across ALL industries.


PaulWilliams_rapekit

Nearly all working parents face this issue in their working life. Who do you think watches kids when parents work? Do you think children are born as 8th graders? This affects all industries.


PapaSlurms

I think you're imagining this is a larger problem for parents than it really is. Some parents, sure. The majority? Nope. Finally, the pay required to "make it worth it" for the members you're discussing, would probably need to be above $25/hr. Which is a non-starter for the absolute vast majority of jobs they would have the skills for.


PaulWilliams_rapekit

It is a problem for everyone who is paying for child care.


GETitOFFmeNOW

That's 30% of the workforce.


PapaSlurms

No, it's not. Because most people earn enough for the expense to not be an issue. It sucks, because it is expensive. But...that's life. You make do, and cut expenses until they can go to school. Such is life.


GETitOFFmeNOW

You are [https://hbr.org/2021/04/childcare-is-a-business-issue]( https://hbr.org/2021/04/childcare-is-a-business-issue) unbelievable uninformed.


jdavi2112

The employee shortage stems from individuals forced to NOT work and earn up to $900 A WEEK on bullshit unemployment benefits while the other half continued about their business with no added benefit


GETitOFFmeNOW

That's a living wage? Is that what you live on? That's $560 a week, net. You can't even get health insurance at that pay. You're living in a ghetto and your kids get beat up on the way to and from school. Your car is always broke down and produce is too expensive to get every day. I was making this in 1982 and it was hard as hell to make ends meet for me and my daughter.


OzarkStonkman

Increased wages just lead lead to increased prices, negating any wage gains. The CPI actually reported positive wage growth recently, problem is inflation is eating that as well.


lindydanny

These companies be like: See what you did by wanting to be paid a liveable wage?!? Think of the children!


tcollin14

Who would have thought that they’d have a hard time getting school bus drivers for 14 an hour with weird hours?


hawg_farmer

And most likely on a split shift at best.


PapaSlurms

Used to be performed by people picking up a spare job in their free time.


WilfordBrimley777

Most people with CDL licenses don't need a spare busdriving job for $14 an hour


SalivatingShark

Oh, you mean that they care about children now? They didn't care when they took food from impoverished children due to inability to pay. This country is a dystopian nightmare.


hotdogappreciator

The article is about supply chain disruptions, it isn’t a partisan affair.


PapaSlurms

Sounds like the parents should be investigated by CPS for child neglect if they are not feeding their kids. (4) "Neglect", the failure to provide, by those responsible for the care, custody, and control of a child under the age of eighteen years, the care reasonable and necessary to maintain the physical and mental health of the child, when such failure presents a substantial probability that death or physical injury or sexual injury would result;


lozotozo

I guess you have trouble understanding the word, “poverty”.


PapaSlurms

A kids lunch is $2. Food pantry, WIC, SNAP, unemployment, tax “refunds” Enrolling in the free lunch program. There are literally oodles of ways to get free food if you live under the poverty line.


lozotozo

Of which all of those programs, require significant time, effort, and an added additional hurdle to enroll in. Which is to say, that still doesn’t equate for real life not playing by an arbitrary set of guidelines you think are plausible for a family to adhere by. Millions of things can, and do happen to families that makes food a scarcity. Schools act as a vital social safety net for children in addition to an educational one. Add in the fact that the public school system serves millions of at-risk students, and the service shortage becomes a dangerous thing. Besides the fact that food should be free for all students. The free and reduced program still leaves plenty of students without who sit on the wrong side of a made up figure. Those that think poverty is a choice, probably have never experienced being poor before.


PapaSlurms

Let me make this really clear for you: FEEDING YOUR KID IS A FUCKING #1 PRIORITY.


lozotozo

Yeah. Fuckwad. Saying that, it’s really hard to feed your kid when you’re poor. Which means that school lunch shortages are incredibly devastating for many families. Just want to make sure that was clear to you.


PapaSlurms

Can lead a thirsty horse to a stream, but can’t make it take a drink. Edit: Stop trying to waste more tax dollars, when current solutions already exist.


lozotozo

Trillions on the Afghanistan war…..Can’t feed kids for free. Explain to me again how it’s the kid’s fault for being poor and hungry? Imagine being against feeding kids. Woof


PapaSlurms

Explain to me how not feeding your kids isn’t child neglect. School can feed them, but then the parents need to be investigated by CPS.


sleepysamuk

I thought cutting off the extra unemployment benefits was gonna solve this. Nope? Weird.


OzarkStonkman

Our unemployment as of August was 4 percent, below the national average, so yes it helped. Compare with a state like California which did not and sits at 7.5...


theboarderdude

Go look at the unemployment rates over the summer. MO unemployment went from 4.1% to 4.2 to 4.3 in the 3 months after MO got rid of the extra $300/week. There hasn't been any appreciable drop in unemployment since February of this year.


OzarkStonkman

And that rate is also low enough not to merit said benefits. I have no doubt it did more good than harm. There was not reason to keep those benefits either way.


theboarderdude

I'd argue that unemployment not decreasing after getting rid of the pandemic assistance shows that those 4% still on it either weren't going to work either way, or actually need that extra money because they cannot work for whatever reason. I tend to err on the side of those who actually need that money. At the very least the money that goes to those who chose to be a succubus on society will get spent and not idilly sit in some retirement account.


OzarkStonkman

I'm not in total disagreement, I just saw it abused, even by my neighbors. The rub in all this is no one has figured out a way to nail the abusers. Just scummy


theboarderdude

I don't disagree with that at all. I figure there's always going to be people that abuse the system unless you restrict it to the point that it doesn't help most people that need it. I guess it comes down to whether someone views that as an acceptable cost or not


GETitOFFmeNOW

Exactly on target. People will vote to keep people on the slippery edge of survival just to prevent the 1% of abusers from benefiting. You can cut 90% of abuse if you hire people to ferret it out. But we prefer to starve all social welfare programs.


Separate_Head1505

Shortages like this are the tip of the iceberg. This reflects the damages pandemics cause financially on top of physical chaos they wrought. I sincerely hope I’m wrong,however, this seems pedestrian compared to how much worse things are going to be.


RareSide5402

My mother works as a food service work for a local district and says between drivers being quarantined and the short staff already they are having to adjust their menu. It may be that they serve hot lunches 3 days a week and "cold" lunch the other 2 days


gypsymegan06

“Wage shortages cause issues with school food shortages” Fixed it for ya.


takecarebrushyohair

188k people are currently sick with covid and almost 12k have died in Missouri. Could have something to do with it.


iTzDoctor

The employment shortage is artificial. Places are accepting applications and either doing nothing with them or offering less than 10 hours. All the have to do to hire someone is look through their massive stack of applications.


hotdogappreciator

I’ve been reading that they’re doing this to abide by PPP repayment rules but can’t confirm


LurkLurkleton

Maybe they can use this as an opportunity to stop feeding the kids such unhealthy crap.


gaelyn

There's multiple issues here. It's not JUST the cost, or availability, or health quality of the food. There's also what the school kitchens are able to prepare. In our school district, for a very long time only 2 of the 6 elementary schools were actively able to cook...the other schools only had equipment for refrigeration, quick heating/maintaining heat (like heat lamps and standard residential-sized microwaves) and cleanup. The 2 schools with kitchens would prep, cook and package the food to be sent to the other schools. It became easier to just order the pre-prepared foods that they could heat and serve, cutting the hours of the food staff down considerably (more than half), eliminating the transport between the schools. There's the issue of choice. Elementary schools have 2 food options, plus a standard sunbutter/jelly sandwich. Middle schools have an entree, 2 sides, a fruit, and then daily have the options of a chicken sandwich, a beef patty with cheese or grilled cheese. The high schools also have choices, including a salad bar, though it's more about pre-made non vegetable salads (pasta salad, tuna salad, chicken salad) than vegetables. The uproar over reducing options was ridiculous...parents claiming their kids would starve if they didn't have the option of a breaded chicken patty on a bun every day and a revolt at a school board meeting with protesting kids and parents. Our parish, which I considered sending my kids to, has a complete school kitchen. 8 ovens, 8 burner range, flat top. We've done some activities up at the school that required us to use the kitchen to cook, and now I know why they have only serve pre-packaged, pre-prepared frozen stuff that needs only thawing and heating... 6 of the ovens don't work, 5 of the burners and the flat-top don't work. The cost for repair/replacement plus the cost of the staff to actually do the cooking (versus heat-and-eat) was exorbitant....and again, the protests over taking away the choices the kids could make to have their crap-quality food. With the cheap and readily available options of mass-produced industrial foods that are individually portioned, quick and easy to thaw/heat/serve, consistent in quality and easily stored, districts and schools will be spending an arm and a leg to do anything fresh and seasonal, much less be able to hire the staff with the skills to prepare it properly. And in this day and age of fast food and standard restaurants everywhere, you won't get kids (or their parents) in the suburbs to appreciate the quality or the effort, much less the taste.


tcollin14

Problem is the healthy stuff is significantly more expensive. It would be worth it to look into programs like Urban Agriculture to help supplement their meals with locally grown stuff that could ease the cost


Youandiandaflame

I’m not gonna downvote you but I did wanna chime in and say this isn’t really true. My background in food systems research and my husband’s in actually supplying food to schools taught us both that. A lot of the time, schools are trading saving time for nutrition and I totally get it (and am not faulting districts from working with the meager shit we give ‘em to work with) but it can be done. The last company my husband worked for actually had a nutritionist on staff whose assistance was FREE to districts but even our own refused the help because the food program was essentially governed by a secretary with a million other duties who just didn’t have time.


tcollin14

But having a nutritionist and actually getting those healthy foods are two different things. I get what you’re saying and time is definitely an issue, but so is cost


PapaSlurms

Time = cost


nuclearpoweredpants

Work or starve.


F1shB0wl816

Or they could eat you and your family and kill a couple birds with one stone. Sounds like a win to me.


nuclearpoweredpants

If they could kill birds with stones, they wouldn't be starving.


F1shB0wl816

Which they’re not, so?


nuclearpoweredpants

You just said they could kill two birds with one stone. Sounds like a meal ticket to me.


F1shB0wl816

I know what I said, I’m not an idiot. Do you not realize you said they couldn’t do so, implying they’re currently starving as some sort of proof to your point. Which they’re not starving, so if they could kill two birds, they wouldn’t be what? Sure sounds like they could be capable of putting problematic people’s heads on spikes, going by your logic. Starving and delivery issues are vastly different, but some edgy cunt probably can’t tell that.


nuclearpoweredpants

They'll starve because they're lazy. Killing birds, squirrels, and coons is a lot easier than people. If they're too lazy to eat animals or do simple gardening, then what makes you think they'll be able to eliminate their superiors? Somehow you think cannibalism will solve their hunger issues when they could put in...a little effort.


F1shB0wl816

How does this even apply to the situation? It has nothing to do with eating animals or gardening. We’ve all heard the expression “ the best part of you ran down your moms ass crack” but don’t actually take it to heart.


JethroLull

u/nuclearpoweredpants is a troll, and not even a creative one.


tcollin14

Work for shit pay or watch somebody else’s child suffer.


nuclearpoweredpants

I work. My kids eat. I eat. If other people don't want to do that, then we can take more for ourselves.


tcollin14

And some children aren’t so fortunate.


JethroLull

You didn't read the article, I take it.