It has long been a complaint of Service Workers everywhere. Sucky Job + No sick pay = Coming to work sick! That gets the spotlight often enough that some semblance of awareness circulates somewhere. What doesn't get the spotlight so much are the injuries slaves suffer from and still have to work through.
We visited family in Hoity Toity Ville, SoCal for the holidays and had a lovely time. However, when we decided to visit the mall to explore, shop and have dinner, we encountered a very injured slave that broke my heart.
Attending The Golden state Pizza Cookhouse, we encountered a young lady who was bustling about to the best of her abilities, but walking with a very pronounced limp. Our request for a booth was granted, as dad explained that mom needed one due to pain from health issues related to a car accident.
The young lady was soon in quite a conversation with Mom, and it came out that the Friday before our visit, the young lady had been in a car accident too. The recent rains had flooded the street and her attempt to turn a corner had resulted a terrible accident with another car that had hydroplaned and smashed into her. Her car had totaled, and she had been hospitalized with internal bleeding.
The fact that she was working meant that the day after she had been released from the hospital, she was back on the floor: injuries and all. She was still on antibiotics to prevent an infection from her injuries (and, no doubt, a pain pill or two).
Mom gave her direct advice on taking a pain pill before bed to help her sleep through the night in relative comfort, as well as ways to manage her pain.
Our server did her absolute best throughout the time we were there, and even retrieved some bread from a nearby restaurant when the kitchen had run out. Her limp slowly became more pronounced, but she stayed friendly and positive sounding (a herculean effort if ever I saw one) the entire time we were there.
My aunt is very well-to-do and generally kind, but she has no concept of the problems endured by people who struggle to make ends meet. *sigh* She is also the one who had no concept of the risks of allergies.
She could not understand why our server had come to work while injured.
I told her that many restaurants don't offer sick pay, and that the server we had probably just couldn't afford to take injury time off. Since her accident didn't happen in the restaurant, the company was under no obligation to give her any sort of compensation or time off. I pointed out the names of several restaurants who are under fire for exposing their guests to sick employees due to lack of sick pay.
She chided me for "thinking negative."
I bit my tongue till it bled in an effort to not slap her upside the head NCIS-DiNozzo-style.
She left a generous tip and wandered out, leaving me with the feeling that no lessons had ben learned. I wished there had been something more I could have done for the poor server.
May all your customers be nice,