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Part-time workers deserve full-time respect

Don't complain to those who have no control. Instead, be polite to them.

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Photo illustration / Shutterstock.com
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I’ve worked in food service since I was 14. Like many other youth in the area, summers are prime time to make a few bucks at the multiple restaurants and resorts in the Brainerd lakes area.

Also, like many others in the area, I have my fair share of horror stories. I’ve been yelled at by people twice my age for saying we were out of a product. I’ve cleaned other people’s unspeakable messes. I’ve seen just about all there is to see at businesses in Crosslake, Nisswa and Breezy Point.

I’ve had my fair share of nasty looks and snide remarks; just about anyone who works in food service or retail has.

Unfortunately, the people who are the rudest are often locals we see year-round.

Those of us working understand that the lines are longer than they are in the winter. We also understand that prices are up from where they were in the off-season.

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The teenagers working behind the counter? They have no control over that.

Megan Buffington Headshot
Megan Buffington, Echo Journal news intern
James McCrae/K&M Media

So next time you think your coffee or ice cream is taking a little long to get, or you want to make a comment about the prices, remember that the people working are usually teenagers with minimal experience being paid minimum wage and with no control over anything but themselves.

Don’t be the customer everyone goes to the back to complain about. Treat part-time workers with kindness.

Megan Buffington, Echo Journal intern, may be reached at 218-855-5854 or megan.buffington@pineandlakes.com . She is a 2021 Pequot Lakes High School graduate who attends the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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