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Letter of Resigna...

Composed originally on Friday the 13th of June 2014 and revised on the Thursday the 19th of June 2014.

Dear Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams,

My name is                       and I am shift leader for Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams’ Shipping Department. I absolutely love the people that I work with and the actual work I do. However, due to the negligence this company has shown towards its employees’ professional and personal well being I feel as though I have no other recourse but to leave this corporation. My final day will be the 27th of June, 2014. Below I have listed my major qualms about the company by and large.

  1. Wage

Currently the starting wage for Shipping and Production stands at $9.00/hr. This wage is static, barring some type of promotion up the company hierarchy. Luckily the turnover rate is 4 months for Production and 6 months for Shipping, leaving a space for both the hard working and the friends of management. This breeds a working space that is both incongruent and at times sycophantic. If working a full 40 hours a week year round that comes to $16,430.42 without overtime, making public assistance programs like Ohio Food Assistance Program and the Home Energy Assistance Program inaccessible.  The average starting wage for shipping and receiving jobs for Ohio is $11.00/hr, most of which offer healthcare to more than their managers.

With this in mind, Fulfillment starts at $10.00/hr with a $1.00 raise at 1 month. They deserve this and more, especially for handling all the larger vehicles in Jeni’s armada, delivering within and outside the state to scoop shops, as well as deep storage transportation. The point where the wage difference becomes insult is the work environment.                 ,                     ,                         , and myself are the workhorses of internal operations. From hazardous materials handling, inventory from 909 to Chesapeake to APCO, construction of shipping materials, movement of those materials, long periods in the freezers (generally half or more of the work week) picking orders, consolidation, cleaning and organizing the freezer space, and EatWell as a whole there is a major disconnect from wage equality.

                        is currently making $11.00/hr after being with the company for 2 years. It is disgusting that he receives absolutely everything for the company and has seniority when other employees make the same amount from the start.                       spends $160 a paycheck just on gas so she can come to work to support her child and her mother who is suffering cancer                           has worked at Giant Eagle for the last two years just so he has dental insurance because he can’t afford to miss work to go to a free clinic. Bobb and Nate are both glistening gods of efficiency and without them holiday profits at this magnitude could not be achieved. Records for shipping have been broken time and time again since I started working. This is pure exploitation of very generous souls and they deserve a livable wage.

  1. Being a B Corporation, High Fives, and Morale

This is taken directly from the Benefit Corporation Declaration: That we must be the change we seek in the world. That all business ought to be conducted as if people and place mattered. That, through their products, practices, and profits, businesses should aspire to do no harm and benefit all. To do so requires that we act with the understanding that we are each dependent upon another and thus responsible for each other and future generations.

There are many actions we take that merit this award: we recycle and compost more than half our waste, we’ve recently put in place a water tower that recycles our water usage, among other projects that makes a low impact on the environment. However, the Benefit Corporation sticker is on every single pint that leaves the building yet most employees don’t make enough in an hour to buy one. This is a quality product derived from skilled labor. This only affects company reputation and hurts the community as a whole.

The High Five system is a hollow attaboy circle jerk. The company meeting after Mother’s Day is a prime example. During the Mother’s Day week          ,           , and I had spent more than 30 hours in the freezer. That same month Production held a contest to see who could do the most freezer runs, moving buckets of ice cream from Frigus to harden. The winner spent about the same amount of time in the freezer in a months time and awarded a paid day off.                           wrote a very pleasant High Five congratulating us for a hard weeks work and for it our department won a $5 gift card to Jimmy John’s collectively. Gift giving does not excuse lack of pay or appreciation.

Company lunch and morale: This is not a fiefdom. We are not serfs tending the field of our lords for food and shelter. It’s company money going to food and beer, to put in our mouths, when it could be going in our pockets.

I can only hope that Shipping and Receiving are recognized as an integral part of the company and compensated accordingly. Until then, my hard work can be better used by a more credible employer.

Sincerely and Truly,

                            e  

In response to the Columbus subReddit:

Company is Community, that is the mission of the company. They have done a great deal to better the company as a whole through autonomization, utility efficiency, a community garden, among other projects. Productivity is at an all time high yet wages have remained stagnant. We have done a great deal of rapid expansion within and outside the state, leaving little money for bettering the conditions for the workers. From this I would like to see a letter of intent affirming that there will be action taken to better wage with a deadline.

Raise base wage to $10/hr with quarterly raises of $0.25. With small but frequent raises the workers have incentive to stay with the company and if that worker cannot perform to standards by that three month mark it is grounds for termination. Managers have the option of putting in a request of further raises with a cap of $1.50 per year. This will allow for reduced turnover rates, retaining and attracting more skilled employees. Some companies actively promote salary transparency, both to show employees that the company has transparent business dealings, and to illustrate the wages which people can earn when they are performing at their peak. In these instances, employees are freely allowed to discuss compensation, benefits, and bonuses with each other, and people are welcome to use this information in negotiations and to ask why someone in a similar position is making more or less money.

With these guidelines you not only fulfill your company mission but create a product that is sustainable by bettering the lives in the local area, something Columbus can be proud of.

about_jenis_lunch_2.jpg

A final request: remove my photograph from the official website. I do not want my image used for your branding so that you can market to “alternative” demographics. I do appreciate that I have a great deal of personal freedom in this company to express myself in what I wear. However, when I am told that wearing a septum negates my potential for higher pay and my image is used in your books and website, it is hypocritical.