Hope on the horizon for Garrison labor woes
By Iain Woessner
There are signs all over the city of Garrison, informing anyone who visits the downtown or picks up the newspaper classifieds that help is very much wanted.
From restaurants to grocery stores to retailers large and small, to even the state park – there is a clear need for workers, and so far, for some time, that need has gone unfulfilled.
“Basically it’s city-wide. If you look in the newspaper, every one of us has an ad out. We’ve had a headhunter looking,” Shannon Staehr, general manager for Krauze’s Market said. “We have had foreign help in the past … but all their embassies are closed because of COVID.”
With students and young people engaged in extracurricular activities and foreign labor stifled by travel restrictions, an already truncated workforce is impacted further by a generous unemployment payout from the Federal government, which provides an additional $300 on top of the state’s unemployment rate.
“There’s about the same amount of jobs as there’s always been around here,” Staehr said. “But I don’t think the extra money they are throwing towards unemployment is helping us out.”
Over at Fort Stevenson, State Park Manager Chad Trautman said the park is struggling to fill seasonal positions, though it has had success in getting some slots filled.
“Park ranger positions are more of a challenge to fill,” Trautman said.