Dear Crossgates Mall,
Please close the mall when there is a state-of-emergency across all of New York State.
Before you think I'm just some 20-something retail person who hates their job and would rather spend their time shopping instead of working, I'm not. I take shifts whenever anyone needs a day off and I almost never ask for time off. During the last snowstorm, I almost killed myself driving to work just to make it there to open on time.
Today there was 10 inches of snowfall. The roads were barely plowed and the parking lot was a disaster area. On days like these, the majority of shoppers are the ones who work in the mall and are detained there relatively against their will.
First thing I did when I got to work was, well, start working. I expected that the mall wouldn't close thanks to Corporate America running everything. About an hour into my shift my manager gave me a call because she heard about the state-of-emergency on the radio. She gave me a direct order to call the mall office, which I did.
First I spoke to security, then I was transferred to "mall management." Who I was actually transferred to was the customer service girl who agreed she thought the mall should close, but she had no authority to do so. She said if a store's home office allowed them to close, then the mall would not fine them. Then she told me that all of the mall managers left the mall already.
I started to get really angry. Even in a state-of-emergency, they refused to close the mall, but every one of the mall managers could get home while it was still relatively light outside. The state-of-emergency urged people to get off the roads after 5, and many of the highways were closing at midnight. I understand this is the northeast, but it was not a dusting. This was ten inches of snow.
Other retail associates were stopping by and seeing when I was closing my gate, but I had nowhere to turn. Another hour passed and about 18 stores had closed. I stepped into the hall and a store manager said every store who closed early was being fined after all, so I had been lied to an hour earlier.
My manager called me again saying she wrote a complaint on the mall's Facebook page, but they were deleting the complaints on their page. BAD JUJU, CROSSGATES COMMUNICATION DIRECTOR! You should NEVER delete messages from your Facebook page!
The mall's security was rude to many of the associates that stopped in to speak to me. Everything about tonight showed how much you care about money. Obviously, you care exponentially more about money than the people that work there. We all risked our lives driving to and from work. We could have easily spent our last hours on earth in an empty retail store in a mall.
So thank you Crossgates, for wasting my time. You really have compassion for the people who work in your mall. Next time, remember that WE are the building blocks to your mall. If we all got in car wrecks on the way home, would you be compensating us for making us stay late? What if we were all killed? Who would open the stores that pay YOU rent?
Just think about us retail workers next time.
Dear Crossgates Mall,