Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

Commentary by Samuel Strait – March 21, 2022

Driving down Washington Boulevard last Tuesday, March 15th, I noticed a
group of hardy souls out, what appeared to be, protesting something at
Sutter Coast Hospital.  Later, I was corrected in my observation, that
it was not “protesting”, but an informational about working conditions
faced by nurses and staff while on the job.  Seems the main complaint is
something we are hearing with regularity through out the County.  Not to
diminish the informational offered by Sutter’s nurses clearly worthy of
consideration, it seems that employees, particularly qualified employees
are hard to come by.  Along with Sutter Coast Hospital’s seeming
inability to properly staff its hospital, the County, and the City are
going through the same inability to fill vacant positions.

This prompted me to do a bit of a tour around businesses in the City as
well as a few out in the County.  Regularly it seemed that most doors
and the windows on many businesses are festooned with a sign, “help
wanted”, looking for employees.  On the national level this has been the
case for some time, but in economically suppressed Del Norte County, the
unemployed always have seemed to outnumber the jobs available.  Clearly
something has changed as the reported unemployment figure for January
2022 clocked in at 6.1% or about 550 of the County’s nearly 9000
employed are out of work.  As time has gone forward that number has only
gone up, where the unemployment rate is a bit over 7% or about 630 job

The question I suppose becomes, “how can anyone be truthfully unemployed
when so many obvious vacancies are being advertised?” It can’t be all
that difficult to work in a restaurant, even a fast food joint.  What
about a clerk in a grocery store or even stocking shelves?  Surely that
kind of employment does not require a PhD.  I understand that there may
be more difficulty hiring for jobs that require a more professional
resume, but entry level positions abound throughout the County.

Sutter administration claims they make up the deficiencies in their
nursing staff by using traveling nurses, yet the nurses are clearly
saying this is not so.  The County and the City claim they can’t pay
enough to attract quality employees who will stay for any length of
time.  No one knows why the local school district is facing shortages,
as it can’t seem to keep up with teacher union demands for higher wages
and benefits.  I can only assume that Pelican Bay State Prison is facing
similar vacancies.

The population of workers has shrunk with the decline in population of
the County?  An increase in those that live here that are independently
wealthy?  Federal tinkering with unemployment for two years over Covid
hysteria?  I suppose we will never know for certain, but this change
seems to have emerged with the recent change in administration in
Washington.  The Country has been awash with cash for the past year
purportedly to make up for Covid hysteria defects in the government
policies surrounding its approach to the pandemic.  Is it possible that
government trying to “fix” its mistakes has only made problems worse?  I
suspect we can count on an unequivocal “yes” to that one.

Speaking to a manager of a local business, she states that her current
staff can barely manage to cover opening hours.  To lose one additional
employee would strain her coverage.  Advertising for additional
employees has produced few respondents, when previous advertising would
elicit thirty or more applications. Even the higher minimum wage
increase of one dollar an hour in California has not produced any
elevated interest from those just entering the work force.  Maybe the
630 people sitting on the sidelines collecting unemployment can answer
that one.  Who knows how many others are no longer even part of the
statistics, yet were once employed.  Seems Covid has put a bad taste in
the mouths of those that no longer work, or even try to be gainfully
employed.  Not going to the “office”, is it to become the new national
pastime?  Seems so…….

2 thoughts on “Where are Del Norte County’s Unemployed?”
  1. What has changed since 2019? Let’s see the mere fact that you are forced to partake in an injection that is not approved by the fda, nih, or cdc could be an issue followed up with wearing a mask all day that smothers you.
    People can’t find workers? Maybe you should lighten that belt you want to beat towards your employees. I would love to work part time but not to adhere to Nazi philosophy followed up by endangering my emotional and physiological well being. Just Sayin

    1. Well, since the only “employees” that might be considered “my employees” work in taxpayer funded positions, and as a taxpayer I didn’t vote to have them get the jab or wear a mask. Point your finger at those that voted our worthless governor into office. But even that no longer can be an excuse, as for most, being vaccinated or wearing a mask is no longer an issue, yet finding people to work remains. In other states this has been the case for some time…. Just saying…
      The FDA, CDC, and the NIH have in fact “approved” of the “vaccines” on first “an emergency basis” and now in some cases the regular approval process. The fact that enough “voters” have voted an administration into office at the National level that has allowed these agencies to continue this malpractice is something you should take up with those “voters” real or not….

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