July 2016, Part I
Ohio Restaurant Gives People A Second Chance. On July 5, The Columbus Dispatch reported on Hot Chicken Takeover, a local restaurant that employs individuals who might face a barrier to employment. The story, “Ex-offenders work hard, reward restaurants that hire them,” found that although more than half of the restaurant’s workforce has a criminal record, they boast over a 50 percent retention rate. The number shows how owner Joe DeLoss’ decision to tap into an often overlooked employment pool of people eager to prove themselves has paid off. Employee Alexis Thompkins has dreams of owning a bakery one day and credits Hot Chicken Takeover for giving her a second chance: “It’s an opportunity for me to learn everything I need to learn in order for me to get to where I need to go. My life has been on hold for so many years.”
Maine’s First Lady Finds Value In Service Industry, Takes Summer Job As Waitress. First Lady Ann LePage, wife of Governor Paul LePage, has joined the ranks of more than 10,000 seasonal employees in Maine, working as a waitress at McSeagull’s this summer. Following in the footsteps of her 28-year-old daughter who worked in a restaurant last summer, Mrs. LePage is truly an example of how the benefits of service industry jobs are sought by individuals of all ages and backgrounds. LePage told CBS affiliate WGME on June 20 that she decided to work at McSeagull’s to make a little extra money and because it’s something she “always, always wanted to do.” General Manager Jackie Barnicoat gave the First Lady rave reviews: “She’s an amazing employee. I’m a big fan; love having her on board.”
Sacrificing Time For Those Who Sacrifice Most. Raising Cane’s employees in Phoenix, Arizona, are committed to their customers and to those who have made sacrifices for our nation. For the sixth straight year, the restaurant celebrated the Fourth of July by hosting its employees and their families to make care packages for soldiers serving overseas as part of the Packages from Home initiative, AZFamily reported. Employee Jim Bear said he woke up early to take part in this event because he is so appreciative of the service men and women who are “not only [risking] their safety, but their comfort and ability to live a normal life.”
Sisters Pursue Careers In The Service Sector. On July 5, The Boston Globe profiled Lucia and Katrina Jazayeri, two sisters who may have never planned to start careers in the food industry, but have now set out to make their mark on an industry they love. After studying communications in college, Lucia started her career working for the first Clover food truck, cutting potatoes and manning the fryer. She said of her first position with the company, “I absolutely loved that job. A lot of great things came from that hard work.” Since then, Lucia has become Clover Food Lab’s communications director, leading all marketing and design for the now-expanded business. After studying social justice in college, Katrina now co-owns Juliet, a European-style cafe. The sisters plan to continue to their careers in the food industry and hope that their businesses will continue to grow and thrive.
Majority Of Part-Time Workers Choose Part-Time. Most assume that part-time employees are looking for full-time work, but they are unable to land these opportunities due to tough competition and a lack of job openings. However, according to a June 28 PBS Newshour column, recent analyses show that “employees are willing to sacrifice earnings if it means achieving a better balance of their personal and professional lives” and the majority of part-time workers actually choose part-time or freelance work for “non-economic” reasons. When these employees were asked why they chose to work part-time, one in four respondents cited caregiving obligations. A recent survey of employees currently working full-time jobs found that 45 percent of respondents cited “work-life balance” as their top priority, which ranked higher than the 34 percent who cited compensation.
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