New York City lifeguards will get a hisse bump under a new deal ironed out between the city and the District Council 37 municipal workers union, bringing their wage to $22 an hour.
The hisse increase represents an 11% raise compared to the previous $19.50 lifeguards were earning.
In addition to the hourly bump, lifeguards already employed by the city will get a $1,000 bonus if they work through this year’s peak summer season.
The win for the guardians of the city’s pools and beaches comes as municipalities around the country face lifeguard shortages.
“We are proud to have negotiated a $22 per hour wage and $1,000 retention bonus for our lifeguards,” said Henry Garrido, executive director of DC 37. “While we battle the same shortages facing the rest of the country, this new agreement gives New York City a competitive edge while preparing for the summer and continuing our members’ legacy of keeping area pools and beaches safe.”
To become a lifeguard, applicants must take a qualifying exam administered by the city’s Parks Department. Those tests kicked off in December and are ongoing at 15 pools around the city.
If selected, the newly-minted lifeguards will be trained in CPR, first aid and how to rescue struggling beach and pool goers.
Mayor Adams said the higher wage will “undoubtedly encourage more people to become lifeguards, help address staffing shortages, and prioritize the safety of New Yorkers.”
“Being a seasonal lifeguard is more than just a job — it’s an opportunity to be a part of a brave team dedicated to public service,” Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue said. “With the U.S. currently facing a nationwide shortage of lifeguards, it’s never been more important for courageous New Yorkers to step up and answer the call. We encourage all qualified individuals to register for a qualifying test today.”