GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Summer swimming pool season is almost here in Northeast Wisconsin, but the fate of Green Bay’s three public pools is unknown. The city has a significant staffing shortage when it comes to hiring lifeguards.
A little more than just two weeks from now the City of Green Bay hopes to open its three pools for the season. But according to Recreation Supervisor Ann Moeller, that’s unlikely to happen.
“If we were to open today, we would have enough staff to operate Resch Aquatic Center. That’s it at this point. That’s all we have,” said Moeller.
And that’s because of a shortage of lifeguards. Moeller says she needs 50 lifeguards to open all three pools and currently has 30 more positions to fill.
“I think we are just competing with a ton of jobs,” Moeller said.
“Lifeguards are the reason the pool is open. Without lifeguards we can’t open up pools,” said Pool Manager/Lifeguard Nora Reschke
Reschke is entering her sixth year as a lifeguard, a position that she says makes for a fun summer.
“You get to meet so many new people. You work with great people, get to know the community,” Reschke said.
But she realizes her team’s main duty here is to keep swimmers safe.
“We have to have so many lifeguards at a pool to make sure that every part of the pool is being watched over. Water safety is really important. That’s why we’re here,” Reschke said.
“It’s a big job, so we want to know we have the right people on the job,” Moeller said.
So, while Moeller is hiring, she’s also committed to bringing the best candidates on board.
“Yes, we’re going to be picky and choosy. We’re going to make sure these pools are safe when we open,” said Moeller.
And if some pools open a bit later than planned – that’s the way it has to be.
“I’m hopeful we can get our facilities open, but we just need people to apply. That’s really what it comes down to,” said Moeller.
If you’d like to apply for a lifeguard position with the City of Green Bay, follow this link.