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Easthampton Parks and Recreations seeks lifeguards for the summer season

Easthampton Parks and Recreations seeks lifeguards for the summer season
Published: Apr. 21, 2022 at 6:17 PM EDT
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EASTHAMPTON, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -Easthampton Parks and Recreation is now hiring for the summer.

The city was unable to open its community pool last year for the first time in history due to a serious lifeguard shortage.

“Last year we only had one lifeguard apply and we did not open the pool at all,” said John Mason, Easthampton Parks and Recreation Director.

This year, Mason said they are searching for candidates earlier to hopefully keep that from happening again.

The pool is set to open on June 25, but not without five to eight lifeguards. To apply, you must be at least 16 years old and certified.

The positions pay $16 an hour. The city will even reimburse you for your lifeguard certification course.

Part of what may be causing this lifeguard shortage is higher pay at pools and beaches under the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, where lifeguards can make up to $26 an hour.

“We’re trying to be competitive with the other parks and recs because the State has a different pool of money where they can pay more and afford to do that. Our parks and recs are on more of a constraint budget,” said Mason.

Mason told Western Mass News the urgent need for lifeguards this summer is happening in other western Mass. communities too, including Belchertown, Monson, and Greenfield.

“We are all dealing with the same thing. It’s just a lack of lifeguards all over western Mass. We are hoping getting the word out will help not only our community to get the pool open but all the other communities too that are going through the same thing we are,” said Mason.

But Mason told us this pool has been a staple of the Easthampton community and he hopes it can be back up and running this summer.

“It’s a treasure for the city everybody loves it. Everybody talks about the nostalgia of coming to the pool and swimming with the kids and stuff so it is an important piece of the park in the city so we would love to see it open this summer in some capacity for sure,” said Mason.

If you are interested in applying to be a lifeguard in Easthampton, the information could be found here.