(Guest post by Jonathan Butcher)
Boy, does this sound familiar! Apparently, the U.S. Post Service shells out $1 million every week to “pay thousands of employees to sit in empty rooms and do nothing.” Mail volume has slid 12.6% compared to last year, and the Post Office simply can’t find enough to do to keep postal workers busy. “So they sit — some for a few hours, others for entire shifts…They spend their days holed up in rooms — conference rooms, break rooms, occasionally 12-foot-by-8-foot storage closets…” Funny, this reminds me of grad school (without the free food).
The employees can’t be fired due to union rules, of course. Not only that, but workers at slower post offices can’t even be reassigned to busier locations.
Why does this sound familiar? Because teacher union rules in New York City created something remarkably similar. As The New Yorker pointed out recently (and noted on jaypgreene.com here) , teachers unions have some 600 teachers in the city sit in “rubber rooms,” playing cards, chatting, or fighting over folding chairs. These teachers get their summers off and are getting paid their full salary (in some cases upwards of $100,000 a year).
Unlike the postal workers, the issue with these teachers in a holding pattern is that they are under investigation for misconduct or incompetence. But the fact remains that unions in both cases make it virtually impossible to fire anyone, the knights of the folding chairs still get paid a full salary, and they are all doing absolutely nothing for months on end.
Our tax money, funding penuchle games for federal and state employees everywhere.
(HT: Carpe Diem)