USA Today makes it sound like a thriving economy is a bad thing. With 911 dispatchers in short supply, average response time is slower.
They start with a description of a case where someone waited two minutes before an operator answered a 911 call. A lot of bad things can happen in 2 minutes.
When Americans dial 911 in an emergency, they expect a fast response and a reassuring voice at the other end of the line. But 911 centers across the country are struggling to hire enough operators, slowing the time it takes to answer calls. On rare occasions, the delays have led to injury and even death. While the crunch has been an issue for years, it has intensified over the past year or two as the nation’s low 3.9 percent unemployment rate increasingly spawns labor shortages across the economy.
That makes 911 dispatcher positions, which can be highly stressful, especially tough to fill.
Of course cities today are busy doing all kinds of things that they feel are more important that 911-call-center staffing. Like fighting with the US government over the rights of illegal aliens.
A business would respond by raising pay, to fix that Supply curve imbalance, but cities can’t do that. Well Some cities can’t do that
Other cities are apparently understanding the problem and taking action.
To attract more candidates, Little Rock over the past two years has increased the starting salary of call takers by $6,500 to $35,000. Dispatcher starting pay has jumped $12,200 to $43,000.
Even with the raises, the salaries are only similar to other, less-stressful jobs. But then there are other problems.
Many millennials, he says, similarly prefer slower-paced jobs even if the salaries are lower. “They’re much more casual,” he says. Record clerks, meter readers and secretaries are among the occupations whose median pay is roughly similar to 911 operators.
Monday Millennial bashing? Could be a good tradition to start. But no, I will bash the city of Little Rock. You need to pay MORE to get people to stay in a stressful job. If they can make the same money with less stress down the road, why wouldn’t they?