Things That Matter

The Suicide Rate Of Retail Workers Sparks Trending Conversation On Reddit— “It’s unbearable.”

Despite their status as essential workers, retail employees have faced unbelievable amounts of pressure and abuse from the customers they serve. From facing indignant customers who refuse to wear masks to those who attempt to demean them for their work, it’s entirely safe to say that retail employees do not get paid enough for the jobs that they do.

A recent post on Reddit underlines this truth in some pretty shocking ways.

Check out the comments below.

“Low paid, long hours, usually very little control of your hours, working weekends and holidays and being forced to put up with a lot of abuse every day and not often too many avenues for promotion. I’m not shocked tbh.”- Foreign-Complaint130

“The worst part when I worked retail was the combination of “very little control of your hours” and the most fucking erratic schedule in the world. Not consistent day-to-day, week-to-week, or month-to-month. Some days working 2 hours, others working 12. Some weeks you only get 3 days, other times you work for 3 weeks straight without a day off. Sometimes a manager would straight up forget to schedule you and that’s a whole week of pay gone.”- ledivin

“The shitty “performance metrics” created by those firms to “optimize” the workplace efficiency make it million times worse. corporate don’t have time to go over those numbers, so they just look at the graph and summary; regional managers dont want the graph to reflect bad performance, so they punish the local managers for dips in the metrics (bad reviews, lower q-to-q number), so the local managers punish the workers if any customer ever complained. overtime it created the vicious cycle and allowed bad customers to face zero consequences, enabling their abusive behaviors. those managers get away with such tactics because there is very limited workplace protection and there are always people who are desperate for work, so they don’t care about the turnovers.”- seimungbing

“Don’t forget having to deal with people coming in very last minute when you’ve been at work all damn day and just want to go home. I swear, people who do that shit are literal scum of the earth.”- tsalyers12

“The worst part about it is people will show up on holidays and make remarks like:

“wow they make you guys work on x holiday?”

And I always responded with “No, you make me work on x holiday.”

They’d probably give me the day off if people weren’t literally trying to spend money at a big box store on a holiday, so I have an unnatural hatred for people who think they should just run to the store on any major holiday.”- doomsdaymelody

“Not only that it’s now a prime target for shooting rampages. I have to watch the same video of “what to do in case of an active shooter” every so often. Each time I just think I don’t get paid enough for this shit.”- 

KresblainTheMagician

“I lost a friend that way. He was working long hours, and was already depressed. Then in the first months of the pandemic, people were particularly rude and abusive and his managers wouldn’t do anything and just overwork him. He was often yelled at by customers for things beyond his control.”- Asleep_Koala 

“I’ve never felt worse as a human being than working in customer service.

Being knowledgeable about the product and a willingness to help. Then getting constantly shit on by customers who’d turn me in to management then being forced to defend myself week in and week out for years..”-LoveIsOnTheWayOut

“I saved this guy $10 on an item by letting him know about an online coupon and did everything for him because he was older and didn’t understand tech much. After the transaction he counts his change and tells me I shorted him a dime. I apologized and gave him his dime. Before he leaves he tells me I should go back to school to learn how to count…”- Rabblerouser6

“I emphasize (meant to put empathize) with this. My “school in underwear“ nightmare is me serving tables or working retail again. I left those years behind long ago, but I still get bad dreams about those times.

Edited and leaving the original in because it’s funny”- Principal_B-Lewis

“I was very fortunate in my time in retail to only get three proper nutters.

I worked in the furniture department at Babies ‘R Us and a lady came in and asked if she brought in a sample of the furniture, could I identify it, match and and replace it?

I said I couldn’t, but I’d make an attempt to find it if it existed, but not to get her hopes up too much because we had a selection that rotated out pretty actively.

She seemed to think that was agreeable and then brought in an actual chip of wood (not a picture or a swatch) that was almost genuinely orange. However orange you could be without being painted that way.

All we had at the time was white, whitewash, a few brownish things and a reddish “cherry” brown. Nothing on the floor, so I looked through the special order catalog; nada.

She lost her mind and started swearing at me and called me deceitful and all kinds of other things.

The yelling attracted the attention of the assistant manager who stood there for about three seconds, long enough to go “Ah, this woman is batshit” and give me a sideways glance before saying, “____, I believe I can help this customer, can you do me a favor and go check on the Baby Italia stock in receiving?”

That wasn’t even specific enough to be actionable but I caught the hint, apologized to the woman for the misunderstanding and left.

Come to find out the chip wasn’t from baby furniture and wasn’t from our store. Amazingly, they actually found the thing based on other pieces she brought in which were marked, and found out it was from an old nightstand she bought in the ’70s (explains the orange).

That’s the burnout part for me. Not helping, not the confusion, not that the person has a genuine concern, but that they double-down on bad reactions unnecessarily while contributing nothing, and expect to not only be seen as reasonable, but that you’re a space alien for daring to deal with it in a professional manner based on your existing level of knowledge and training.

Hell, my department manager was like that. She never said a word to me, then brought me in to talk with both the manager and assistant manager, and complained my product fluency was lacking. At one point I said, “I wish you would have come to me first and let me know. I saw ____ the other day had a sash and a guidebook to learn about all the kinds of products, so I’ve felt kind of helpless, and when I asked you before about the best way to study up you said it was all by osmosis and experience.”

The managers cut things off right there because the first time I was finding out meant that there time was being wasted. Which meant she got pissed at me for being outed and claimed up and down she’d given me training materials before despite there being no evidence besides an assumption in her memory.”- credit_counselor

“I’ll say it every time, but when I was in retail (and this was many years ago) I could deal with the rude customers, what I couldn’t deal with was managers who forced you to enforce rules just so they could come skipping out of their office to say, “Oh we can do that for you!” and happily bend the rules so you could stand there looking like a jackass. Zero patience for that bullshit.”- shanthology

“Yeah, that part sucks. I got into this habit of being straight up with people about it.

“Unfortunately, I’ve been instructed by my manager that I can’t do that for you. But if you’re okay waiting, I can try and ask my head cashier or manager to help you.”

Sometimes they’d take me up on it, but there were plenty of times they didn’t. But I had a lot of good experiences because I figured out who to ask about what.” – YellowHammerDown

“This is the exact kind of company I’m working for right now. We have ridiculously strict policies about our products, to the point where I’m arguing with people more than not. Then I have to call my superior and they tell me to just make the customer happy. The fuck is the point of the policies if I’m just going to let things slide anyways????”- brahmen_noodle

“I still dread weekdays and have thought about quitting. Trouble is, my work experience lends toward interest from companies who need customer service workers. I feel completely stuck in a no-win scenario.

Try executive support, at least you’ll get paid well – even if you still have to deal with people who act like children, at least your customers have the money to go with the inflated sense of self worth.”- SpaceChevalier

“An old employer did this to me. I got a promotion doing back office work, and then one day they sent me back into Customer Service, because someone else went on maternity leave.

I was angry, depressed, and absolutely hated it. I made several complaints but they didn’t amount to anything. I applied for different jobs but didn’t hear anything.

I finally conceded I was stuck in life, and even when I would get moved back to my office job, there was no guarantee this wouldn’t happen again. So I went back to school. I spent 4 years working full time and being a full time student. I knew I needed a better resume (especially being an older college student), so I volunteered for everything at this crappy job. I become an invaluable team member. I was even given an award (lol) for being such a committed employee at an annual dinner.

And then I quit. My resume had a bunch of good stuff on it, I had a degree, and had lined up a new job with all these skills I had been working on.

The look my boss had on their face was priceless. They tried to counter offer but the new job was literally double what I was making and even more than my boss was paid so that wasn’t going to happen.

I’m not saying that path works for everyone, and it was a huge time commitment, but I was able to leverage all those awful customer service experiences for something positive. I hope you can do the same!”- Hambushed

“My first job as a teen was telemarketing. Awful idea. I did that for about 3 years.

I started developing high anxiety from the job but didn’t realize it. I ended up walking out twice because I just couldn’t do the job anymore. I was good at it, but I couldn’t bare the thought of being yelled at anymore.

A few years later I’m doing tech support because I want a career in the tech field. Nearly a year later I walk out of that job because I just couldn’t do it. I was good at doing the job, but I couldn’t bare the thought of being yelled at anymore.

Four years ago I try to do phone work again for a corporate ISP handling business internet, and I couldn’t last even a year. I’m almost begging my supervisors to let me train others on occasion because my anxiety is fucked whenever I’m on the phones. The supervisors didn’t give a single shit. So I started calling out often to avoid the anxiety. I was also going through a lot in my personal life and nearly committed suicide because it was all too much. The thought of ending my life seemed amazing compared to facing life for another day.

I walked out of that job ranked in the top 20 technicians out of 160 for 3 consecutive months after the supervisors gave zero shits about my performance. So I was good at the job, I just couldn’t bare being yelled at anymore.”- ilikethemaymays

“I’ve really, really been forcing myself to show patience during all of this. Part of that is the way I was raised, part of that was the decade-plus I spent in low level customer service jobs. I know how much these kinds of jobs suck under normal circumstances, and now you have idiots who won’t comply with mask orders and get upset when their favorite brand of Charmin is out of stock. Personally, I’ve noticed an increase in mistakes and even some rude behavior from people I interact with, but every time I’ve let it go. People under enormous stress all the time aren’t going to be at their best, the rest of us have to understand that. It’s not the guy running the register or the girl answering the phone who is at fault if things aren’t perfect.”- cugamer

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AOC Teams Up With NYC Mayor And Assembly Member To Get The Vacunabus To Those Who Need It

Things That Matter

AOC Teams Up With NYC Mayor And Assembly Member To Get The Vacunabus To Those Who Need It

Spencer Platt / Getty Images

The Covid vaccine has proven to be the most important tool in getting life back to normal. Yet, access to the vaccine is not the same for everyone across the board. Some community don’t have the same access as others and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is changing that in New York City.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is part of the team that has created the Vacunabus in NYC.

The Vacunabus is exactly what you think it is. The mobile vaccination center is going into hard-to-reach communities to create a more equitable distribution of the life-saving vaccine. Right now, the bus is focusing on a specific group of people that need the vaccine: food service workers and undocumented immigrants. After that, the bus will focus on the homeless community in an attempt to vaccinate as many people as possible.

“There’s 500,000 New Yorkers who work in restaurants and we want to find all of them who want to be vaccinated and make it easier for them,” Sean Feeney, co-founder of Relief Opportunities for All Restaurants — or ROAR, told CBS NewYork.

The mobile vaccine centers are an expansion of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s first vaccination bus.

As American yearn for their lives to get back to normal, it is imperative that the vaccine rollout include as many people as possible. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently relaxed mask restrictions for all fully vaccinated people. If you are fully vaccinated, you can now participate in indoor and outdoor activities in groups with no masks and no physical distancing. It is a sign that that vaccine is the only way for life to get back to normal. It is welcomed news after more than a year of physical distancing and mask-wearing.

“We have all longed for this moment,” Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said at a news conference Thursday. “If you are fully vaccinated, you can start doing the things that you had stopped doing because of the pandemic.”

It’s been a long quarantine but as the vaccine continues to roll out, we can all start to breathe a cautious sigh of relief. We are almost there.

READ: Ted Cruz Calls Fellow Senator ‘Complete Ass’ For Wearing Masks Indoors Per Health Guidelines

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A Michigan Woman Accidentally Glued Her Eye Shut After Mistaking Nail Glue For Eye Drops

Fierce

A Michigan Woman Accidentally Glued Her Eye Shut After Mistaking Nail Glue For Eye Drops

Mark Metcalfe / Getty

She’s no Gorilla Glue Girl but you can call her lucky!

Yacedrah Williams, of Michigan, is putting glue back in the headlines again after she accidentally reached for nail adhesive instead of her eye drops. Fortunately, after a frightening experience, she was able to recover and maintain her eyesight.

Williams made the shocking mistake last Thursday after experiencing dry eyes.

Williams mistook a glue meant to fix broken fingernails for the lubricating eye drops she typically uses for her contact lenses, according to WXYZ. In an interview with the local Detroit station, Williams explained that after falling asleep with her contacts in, she woke up in the middle of the night with dry eyes. Feeling groggy, she reached for her purse where she stored her eye drops, and accidentally retrieved a bottle of nail glue. It wasn’t until the glue went into her eye that Williams realized she’d reached for the wrong bottle.

“I was like, ‘Oh my goodness!'” Williams told the outlet. “It dropped in my eye and I tried to wipe it away.”

However, she was too late. Williams realized her eye had glued shut. “It sealed my eyes shut,” Williams commented. “I just started throwing cold water, and I was trying to pull my eyes apart but couldn’t. It was completely shut.”

Panicked and alarmed she called for her husband to call 911.

Williams immediately went to the hospital where doctors managed to open her eye and remove the glue which had fallen on her contact lens. Williams did lose some of her eyelashes but she can still be fine.

“They said that actually, the contacts saved my vision,” Williams explained to WXYZ. “They had to pull on it and flip the top of my lid.”

Count it as a lesson learned however, Williams said that after the horrifying incident she is committed to “never” putting her eye drops and nail glue in the same place again. In fact, she remarked, “I don’t think I’ll even have nail glue anymore.”

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