Trade Association Says New Jersey Labor Shortages Need Government Help | New Jersey

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(The Center Square) – Small business owners are facing heavy burdens to deal with labor shortages and supply chain demands and delays, the head of state said. National Federation of Independent Business of New Jersey.

Eileen Kean of the New Jersey NFIB said in conversation over dinner that the discussion turned to a start-up food truck business. Everyone said it was great that the truck driver/cook made $20 an hour.

“But $20 an hour has become the standard rate. This is what it takes now to find an employee, to keep an employee who is dependable, who you can rely on, who will show up and work their shifts,” she told The Center Square.

Dealing with labor shortages and supply chain delays make it very difficult to get products on the shelves, she said.

The sectors suffering the most are restaurants and food delivery businesses, with pubs, taverns and eateries struggling to get the critical chain of employees needed to run their businesses, Kean said.

“We’ve seen our members who cater to local high schools now try to find shifts that high school students can work,” she said. “It’s just very, very difficult to maintain reliability.”

Diners can see it when they go out to eat because they can assess the experience of helping, which may be very little. Or they might notice that the restaurant has been successful in hiring and retaining reliable people, which shows in the spirit of the establishment, she said.

“Trying to address staffing shortages at this time continues to require government intervention,” Kean said.

More money needs to be spent on improving child care and creating more opportunities for parents who need it, she said.

The New Jersey Assembly Budget Committee was asked March 23 to pass incentives and programs to make the salaries of preschool teachers and other early childhood educators comparable to the salaries of elementary and middle school teachers. secondary, reported the New Jersey Monitor.

Workers and businesses need reassurance from the government that COVID-19 is slowly moving behind us so that parents who have chosen not to return to work can walk away and return to the workplace, Kean said. .

That certainly plays a big role in the positive nature that the government can maintain and part of that is that the government needs to get back to work, Kean said.

“What kind of message does it send when a resident of New Jersey finds out that the Department of Labor, its employees only come into the office twice a week?” she asked. “Where do they call the Department of Consumer Affairs to check ‘Hey, what happened to my nail shop license? How come you didn’t renew my nail salon license? And you find out that there are no employees going to consumption, everyone is still working from home.

She said it sends the wrong message to everyone in the state because if the government doesn’t get back to work, it may not be safe for anyone else to come back.

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