Although fears of layoffs have officially hit the U.S. workforce, the Great Resignation hasn’t let up just yet.
In fact, New York City has seen a mass exodus of public sector workers, leaving gaps in some of the most important jobs needed for the city’s operations.
Exits include healthcare workers, parks staff, police officers, and child protective service employees, with the ages of workers departing ranging from seasoned officials to young workers seeking more purpose from their work.
As a result, the city’s inspection teams, Police Department, and Department of Housing Preservation and Development are experiencing record-high job vacancies.
According to an interview with 20 current and former workers for the city, there are various reasons for the exit, including: long-winded hiring processes, better private sector positions, hiring freezes, and overall limited hiring capabilities.
Additionally, some cited that New York City Mayor Eric Adams’ persistence on a full office return has led public sector workers to seek more flexibility.
“While hybrid schedules have become more common in the private sector, the mayor firmly believes that the city needs its workers to report to work every day in person,” said Frank Carone, the mayor’s chief of staff in a memo to staff.
However, some officials and union leaders are remaining advocates for hybrid work and are calling on the mayor to embrace a flexible future.