Thread: uncounted hours
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Old 04-27-2009
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Northern Florida
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I used to come in early, stay late, take stuff home, and come in on my day off. I probably asked for overtime 25% of the time. The old chief was good about it. He also gave me some autonomy over my schedule, treated me with respect and encouraged independent thought and creative problem solving. He assumed I knew my job and let me do it. I was the lowest paid ACO in the county but the working environment was good and the flexibility allowed me to go back to school and attend my sons' afterschool events. Things were good. We were happy. My two-man office won "Outstanding Agency of the Year" through our state animal control association.

Then the new chief came, the guy who only sees numbers. I'm on a rigid schedule ("to maximize resources and manpower") -- which means yes, I sit here 10 hours on holidays and don't get one stinking call; and no, I can't leave early to go pick my son up from the airport. Morale has dropped in the entire police dept. The guy has lowered standards on training and hiring requirements to the bare minimum to save money and maximize his numbers. We're waiting for someone to get seriously hurt. Good people are leaving -- we're all looking elsewhere. We're keeping stupid stats and he makes arbitrary decrees without getting all the facts. As for animal control, the man has NEVER visited my kennel (2 blocks from his office), NEVER ridden in my truck, has no idea what I have to work with. I am still the lowest paid ACO in the county, but all the perks are gone. I'm very UNhappy. I don't sleep well. I've put on 20 pounds. My stomach hurts when I think about coming to work.

So now I am one of those "come in, do my job, go home" type of people. I leave work at the office. If it doesn't get done, well, too bad. I've been told that there is NO overtime unless it's pre-approved, so it can wait until tomorrow. I don't answer my phone on my days off. I don't check my work email from home. I don't think of it as being lazy or uncaring. Instead, it's a coping mechanism. Lord knows how messed up I'd be if I took this stress home with me.

Last edited by mzk10; 04-27-2009 at 08:03 AM. Reason: Can't spell!!
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