California DMV Drives Workers Mad With Furlough Fridays

Channel 10 news in California reported that the California headquarters for the Department of Motor Vehicles is driving its employees mad with its new edict that requires employees to work on Fridays for free.

For the past year, employees at the DMV have had Fridays off so that California could save some money and reinvigorate their financially strapped and stressed economy. While workers have enjoyed the extra time off, records, drivers' licenses and identification cards have been mounting, creating a huge backlog of work to be done.

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The DMV's first attempt to solve this backlog was to allow employees to volunteer to work overtime on Saturdays, but after a month of that, the DMV realized that they were not chipping away at the mountain of work that had accumulated in the past year, and there was a lack of volunteers, so the DMV has now issued a new edict-that employees must work furlough Fridays for free until further notice. According to a statement issued by the DMV to the Channel 10 news, "management has no recourse but to implement Self-Directed Furlough Fridays."


DMV Workers Forced to Work For Free

Workers at the DMV are not happy about their new assignment at all. While many acknowledge that there is a real backlog of work to be done, most, if not all, feel that being forced to work for free is just flat out unacceptable. Employees asked to comment on the matter said that they felt contained, forced and one woman even said that she felt like she was on a leash. Cliff Brandt even went so far as to compare the DMV's actions to slavery. "Nobody should work and not get paid. I think they used to have a word for it. It's called slavery.

With a state as large as California and a DMV that issues over a million drivers licenses and half a million identification cards each year, a backlog as large as this can cause a real problem for the entire system and everyone involved. Drivers are anxious to get their licenses in a timely manner, and many people depend on the DMV for ID cards so that they can open bank accounts and get credit cards and rent a place to live, so having a heap of work to process through the system, slows the entire system down, adding an extra week to ten days onto the amount of time it already takes for people to get the cards and documents that they require.

The work needs to be done and it needs to be done quickly, but mandated furlough Fridays are the source for much backlash from DMV employees. It is ironic that the definition for furlough is "a temporary leave of absence from employment, duty in the armed services, or from a prison term," because in this case, the DMV's mandated furlough makes its employees feel like prisoners with no options.


Gwen Parkes

Gwen Parkes

Editor

Gwen Parkes is a seasoned writer and editor and a subject matter expert (SME) on healthcare and healthcare reform. She spends her days freelancing for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and various publishing houses. Parkes exercises everyday to cleanse her mind and find her inspiration- running and hot yoga are her current devices of choice- and she is an amateur chef and self-proclaimed foodie; she believes that good supermarkets are happy places, a good Pinot Noir goes with everything and coffee should be served hot, with cream and sugar and as frequently as necessary.

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CAresident


DMV should raise the fee for people to apply for driving license and be able to provide the service from Monday to Friday. Right now, it is difficult to schedule a behind the wheel driving test in the entire Bay Area within 7 days. DMV should let people to have the driving permit good for two years instead of one year after people have
passed the written test since it is difficult to make a behind the wheel driving test appointment now. I will need to drive 60 miles in order for my son to take a behind the wheel driving test within 7 days scheduling time before the permit will expire in 10 days.

June 03 2010 at 6:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jack james

This is to answer all your questions. I am a DMV employee IN CA and I love my job. I work there for the retirement benefit. and I really do love helping people out how ever I can legally. As for the pay we DO work on a salary and now that there are fuloughs fridays, there turned the salary into an houly rate to adjust it. As most of you know in the private work envirnment if you work for a salary you get paid regardless of the hours worked or not worked. Not here,and I think that is fair but as a full time employ we should get full time work. FYI we are not high paid only upper mngmt get the big money. We only make $100. above what is considered poverty now with the Furloughs. And now they want to cut us back to min. Wage.

May 14 2010 at 6:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dobbs

You are missing the point.
You have a job with good pay and great benefits.
Unlike myself who has been out of work for well over a year now and has not had insurance for over four years.
I just had my car repossed two days ago, So you put that smile on and think about maybe that person who is having a bad day having to wait over three hours to do their DMV business is in my boat.

March 13 2010 at 4:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Cassandra

People need to realize that government employees are people just the same. Didn't you ever think about the fact that these "people" (since you insist on categorizing them) have families; and they are struggling just like everybody else. My mother works at the Dmv and she has been for the past two years. And for the past two years she has only been able to make a little over $20,000 a year. Now I don't know all the facts exactly but I am pretty sure that is around poverty level. She has to take care of my sister as well as me. And although I recently got a job we are still very well living paycheck to paycheck. Times are changing and unless you currently work for the government I don't think you criticize these people. They are just trying to make a living just like everybody else. Would you want to work for free? I know I wouldn't, I would rather not work at all.

February 11 2010 at 3:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dobbs

This country has become a joke.

February 09 2010 at 10:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dobbs

DMV employees should just be thankful that they have jobs.
As anyone who has ever been to this nightmare we call the DMV knows they are the most rude and disrespectful people around.
Making a living of tax dollars geting ebery holiday of paid pensions, benefits no other human being would ever receive.
take the furlow day and shut the F up !!!!!!!!!!!!

February 09 2010 at 10:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to dobbs's comment
Justin

As someone on th other side of the counter, your comments are disgusting. Try keeping a smile when you have people screaming at you because they either didnt bother to ask what they needed to renew a license or register a vehicle before they actually went to the DMV, or they were told they had to actually pay for a license, title, registration.

The vast (95%) of people who come to the DMV, at least in the state *I* am in (not California) are decent , upstanding people, where even if they dont get what they need that trip, they leave knowing exactly what it is they need to bring back, and, although maybe a bit frustrated, they remain civil. It is the 1 in 20 that create a problem, thinking that screaming, threatening the CSR or those around them, and throwing things is acceptable.

I go to work every day trying my best to do my job, help those customers i can, and do so as quickly as i can so that they can go about their daily business. I try to do so with a smile and a kind greeting or goodbye, its called good customer service skills, but having to guess wether that person your waiting on is the 1 in 20 that will melt down and or try to shoot you, or one of the other 19 gets...interesting to say the least.

Now, i am also the 1st to admit that there ARE some DMV employees who really shouldnt be given the amount of leeway they get when dealing roughly with a customer, either ignoring them entirely, or not knowing their own jobs, but its just like any OTHER public orientated job, there are always bad apples, but its a minority not the majority as you seem to put it. I have a wife, children, a lot of bills to keep up, and obligations like anyone else. i would much rather enjoy my job than to go to work dreading it. thank you

March 12 2010 at 8:42 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Glenn

kathi said, "Expecting people to work for free is ridiculous. It is forced labor. Being rude and hateful is equally ridiculous and unproductive."

Our Constitution provides that no direct taxes could be assessed against the American people. Money removed from my check before I receive it is forced labor. The income tax act was passed SOLEY to provide funds for the US to enter the WWI. Just as our current resources are being squandered in 2 unprevoked wars against nations that had no means to war against us.

I agree that generalizing unfairly in re: government services is unfair. I suppose that people are bitter because, where it counts, our governments have turned into glorified protection rackets. If the budget is short, then its time to cut government. Not create more taxes to pay for services I don't want, don't need, and wouldn't pay for if the protection rackets, like all protection rackets, couldn't use force to collect.

If California has troubles with DMV, then they should have registration only once per car owner instead of every year. I'm sure that would reduce their work load

January 20 2010 at 10:48 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Glenn

1st- Property taxes pay for the services you mentioned.
2nd- I drink clean water with rat poison (sodium flouride) in it because aluminum producers in this country paid the prostitutes in state and federal gov to help them dispose of their toxic waste.
3rd- All of the Federal income taxes go to interest on the debt.
4th- After 5 decades+ in the US I can state with confidence that if anything turns us into a third world country, it will be our government and the sellouts in it who have done so so.

When an ostriche puts its head in the sand its amusing. When people do it, its sad.

January 20 2010 at 10:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kathi

I do not understand the bitter disdain for government employees. There is little differnce in the people who choose public over private jobs other than an inherent conservatism. To generalize unkindly is unfair and demonstrates a lack of understanding of the critical work and services government provides. Do not hold these dedicated people responsible for a budget shortfall they did not create. Expecting people to work for free is ridiculous. It is forced labor. Being rude and hateful is equally ridiculous and unproductive.

January 19 2010 at 8:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mary

Maybe instead of cutting the employees of the states pay we should cut the elected officials of the states pay. Oh nd get rid of the illegals.

January 16 2010 at 8:09 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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