The MTA Is Expecting To Lay Off Thousands of Workers and Cutting Services in Mid-December

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Around mid-March when the NYC lockdown happened due to the highest cases, subway riders have descended rapidly to over 90 percent. As the phases slowly reopened in the recent months, subway riders still remained below 70 percent compared to pre-pandemic. Road traffic, including the tunnel and bridges have plummeted significantly throughout the months.

MTA service reduction and layoffs are all dependent on the federal government’s funding and the economic activity across the New York County. The MTA is expected to lay off at least more than 9000 workers if they do not receive any significant amount of funding because they need $12 billion in federal emergency funds to keep the system running as is.


According to Fox5, NBC (Source 1) and (Source 2), and CBS, below are the statistics:

  • “MTA officials have asked Congress to cough up $12 billion in federal aid by the end of 2021 to stay afloat.”
    • “The MTA has been asking for a bailout from the federal government. It did receive $4 billion in stimulus funds, but for the additional $12 billion to be approved it would likely need to pass through the Senate.”
  • “Some of the other cuts will reportedly include laying off more than 8,200 workers on subway and buses… and more than 1,100 Metro-North and LIRR employees.”
  • “Some weekend service would be slashed entirely while weekday train schedules would be cut by about 40%.”
  • “Fare hikes are also a possibility. In August, transit officials said a Metro-Card swipe could go up from $2.75 to $3.75.”
  • “The MTA received $4 billion from the federal government earlier this year but has asked for an additional $12 billion. It is uncertain whether additional money for transit assistance will be included in future COVID-19 stimulus bills.”
  • “Motorists and mass transit riders in New York are already facing fare and toll increases next year. Tolls and fares are planned to increase 4 percent in both years, New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said earlier this month.”
    • “The board is considering a number of options to raise fares on buses, subways, the LIRR and Metro-North by 4%. Tolls could go up as much as 8% or $6.70.”
    • “The projected fare and toll increases would raise $145 million in 2021 and rise to $650 million by 2024, according to the report.”
  • “Even if normal ridership returns by 2023, the MTA still projects budget deficits totaling more than $19 billion through 2024, according to DiNapoli’s report. Included in that is a projected $6.3 billion deficit in 2021, which would be more than 50 percent of total revenues. The report called the gaps ‘historic in nature.'”
  • “‘Increased cleaning and disinfecting of the subway, rail and bus systems — which has included the rare step of closing subways overnight — is costing the MTA about $1 billion in unplanned expenses,’ DiNapoli said. He didn’t have an estimate for how much the MTA is saving by the overnight closures, but said any savings are likely being offset by the costs of cleaning.”

For Retail Employees: How To Appreciate Your New Job During COVID-19

There are 25 million Americans unemployed to this day. On the other hand, 12 million Americans are set to lose unemployment on late December 2020. There are tough days for folks ahead of time.

For those who just secured a new job during COVID-19, many prefer working full-time rather than part-time because they want to make a decent amount of income to pay off their bills, rent, mortgage, etc.

If you are a new hire for retail employers like CVS, Duane Reade, Starbucks, TJ Maxx, Wholefoods or Target, you may be wondering why you are only getting part-time hours (20 hours per week) when you thought that it would be a full-time schedule (because you applied for a Full-Time position), and at a minimum wage of $15 per hour.

Instead of being disappointed that you are only a part-time employee or thinking about quitting to look for another full-time job, you want to take this moment to appreciate the job that you have because many individuals are laid off with no jobs, individuals are being ghosted by recruiters after 10 interviews and there are individuals that are on the verge of homelessness, while they are still struggling to find jobs.

First, unfortunately Sales Associates and Team Members always start off as part-time employees (especially if it isn’t during the holiday season) with the opportunity for periodic full-time hours or promotion to full-time employees based on performance. On top of that, you must understand that during this unprecedented time — many employee hours and pay are being cut as well.

In the first month, sometimes new hires work less than 20 hours because supervisors are still trying to place them into the existing schedule.

Image via CB4 Spotlight

Second, Black Friday and Christmas is right around the corner which means that the holidays are upon us. Therefore, it is suspected that most staff will be getting more hours over the coming weeks so long as business picks up for the retailer.

Lastly, it is recommended that you should bring this goal up with your Team Lead, Department Supervisor or the Captain/Store Manager. You could start by stating that you are enjoying the work, happy to be part of the team, and interested in additional responsibilities. You can then follow up with questions such as:

  • “Can I cover or pick up additional shifts?”
    • Picking up shifts from co-workers requires and allows you to develop relationships at work.
  • “I noticed that X can be solved with Y, can I take on that project with additional hours?”
    • Asking supervisors at the end of a shift if they need support tomorrow or the next day shows that you are taking ownership and asking them to give you the opportunity to make smart decisions on your own instead of relying on them.
  • “I noticed that X shift is one that is difficult to schedule, can I step up and add that to my workload?”
    • Providing your phone number to a scheduling supervisor, letting them know that you are available to pick up shifts will tell them that you have an open schedule.

It is all about open communication and relationship building. Increased trust and dependability leads to more hours.