SEIU 1021

Napa County workers speak out on staffing crisis at board of supervisors meeting
The County currently has a 20% vacancy rate that is decimating service delivery and fueling burnout


Dozens of Napa County workers gathered at the administration building this morning to speak out at the Napa County Board of Supervisors meeting about how understaffing in critical departments is hurting residents. Workers called on the county elected officials to commit to filling the hundreds of vacancies that are already budgeted for while using the county’s budget surplus to expand public services and invest in good-paying, permanent, county jobs that serve our residents.

Non-competitive wages, high cost of living, and near-to-no affordable housing have left crucial Napa County public services dangerously understaffed. There are currently hundreds of vacant funded full-time positions for the County of Napa. When the staffing shortage is this bad, full and timely public services can’t be provided.

“Being a child welfare worker is not a job for the faint of heart, and it’s a position that naturally lends itself to a lot of burnout and issues with retention. However, child welfare recruitment and retention have been further impacted by a lack of competitive pay and benefits,” said Ian McClesky, an emergency response social worker with Child Welfare Services. 

“During my time in the emergency response unit, we have consistently lost staff, to where roughly 50 percent of positions are now vacant. Over the past year, these vacancies have created a feedback cycle, wherein remaining staff have still needed to investigate the same number of reports and continue to adhere to an increasing number of mandates, but with heavily diminished staffing.”