2022 – Meet a Generation Z lifeguard who gets a $1,000 bounty for a job that’s badly needed across the country

  • Many employers offered bonuses to lifeguards to ease employment problems this summer.
  • One teenage rescue worker said he gets a bonus and makes $21 an hour.
  • A lifeguards official said the signature and recommendation bonuses should continue beyond this year.

Ben Kaplan, 17, spends the summer swimming and sitting by the pool. That’s why he gets $21 an hour.

Also, like many American bailouts this summer, he took a signature bonus — an incentive that companies in every industry give to workers during labor shortages. Later this summer, he could receive another $500 retention bonus, bringing the total incentive to $1,000.

Kaplan said he “always loved to swim.” He added that the opportunity to work as a lifeguard at the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation was “a way of making money through what I love to do.” He said he sees the reward as “very attractive” and good overall, because the country needs “as many rescuers as possible”.

Ben Kaplan.

And she’s not the only one. mayo tweet From the Department of Parks and Recreation in Austin, Texas, he stated a reward of $1,250, and the City of Phoenix offered an incentive of $2,500. Charlottesville, Virginia joined the train, andNew York Governor Kathy Hochhol tweeted On June 22, the state will increase wages by up to 34% to meet the labor shortage in its complexes.

Pools across the country are experiencing labor shortages, and some are cutting hours or temporarily closing. The deficiency is also notable swimming programs.

Rosa Escarino, Chicago Park District superintendent, said in Bayan County.

The city recently raised its lifeguard bonus to $600 and is announcing a $500 referral bonus.

“We hope that the retention and referral bonuses, along with the path to permanent recruitment, will attract qualified candidates to support our summer program,” Escarinho added.

The rewards seem to have worked for waterfront areas in need of lifeguards in Massachusetts.

“We’ve been working hard on recruiting lifeguards since last year,” Stephanie Cooper, acting commissioner for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Conservation and Recreation, said in an interview with Insider in May, adding that rewards are “one of the tools we provide use,” as well as increasing use. Salary.

“Because of this complete package, we had a really good response in terms of the applicants who came to us,” Cooper said.

Kaplan said he thinks the awards could encourage some young job seekers to become lifeguards.

“I feel like we are surrounded by all this culture, as if there are all these videos on Tik Tok ‘Oh what’s your salary?’” Kaplan said. “I think the bonus of signing for a summer job is more impactful because that’s just front and center.”

The ‘worst year’ of lifesaving shortages

Bernard C. Fisher, director of health and safety for the American Lifeguard Association, told Insider in May that this was the “worst year” he’s seen due to a shortage of lifeguards. He added that the shortage began about 20 years ago.

During this time, he said, “the baby boomer generation were building more pools.

“We are developing more boardwalks that need protected beaches,” he added.

In addition, he said, the United States also depends on young workers.

“We didn’t have as many youngsters coming into our population as the number of post-World War II baby boomers who were retiring and building these pools and building developments,” Fisher added.

According to Fisher, retirees and educators are two groups of workers who can help with the shortage of lifeguards. In general, there may be other groups of talent looking for work that can help employers with recruitment difficulties – groups of talent that have historically been overlooked in the labor market.

“But the problem is also the wages we paid to the lifeguards,” Fisher said.

“We really think it’s a competitive industry, broadly speaking, the job market,” Fisher said. “And we have to pay medical professionals well, and incentives are also a good way to try to overcome the shortage.”

Incentives, such as signing and referral bonuses, should continue beyond this year, Fisher said.

According to the economist at Gusto, a payroll and hiring platform for small and medium-sized businesses, teens like Kaplan are helping employers tackle labor shortages.

“Across the Gusto platform, we see that during this economic recovery, young workers continue to step in and bridge the gap, providing an attractive alternative resource for companies struggling to navigate an unprecedentedly tight labor market,” Luke Pardue, economist from Gusto, previously said in A statement to Insider.

About a third of swimming pools could be closed or have shorter working hours, according to the American Lifeguard Association, negatively impacting communities across the country.

“I think we need to understand that these complexes are of great benefit to society,” Fisher said. “This is where the community can come together, relax, see your neighbor, have a beautiful and safe environment for children and family, and beat the heat.”

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