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Milwaukee County proposing partnership with schools to help lifeguard shortage

Bradford Beach
Posted at 11:20 AM, Jun 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-07 13:13:56-04

MILWAUKEE — Lifeguard shortages are impacting summer plans across the country and Milwaukee County is no exception. County Supervisor, and Chairman of the Parks Energy and Environment Committee, Sheldon Wasserman called the situation a crisis and life or death matter.

"It's just terrible. It's just not what Milwaukee is all about," Wasserman said.

The county has been pushing and asking people to apply for lifeguard positions. Right now, the county has just 25% of needed staff to open all pools and staff all beaches.

"We don't have a single person here at Bradford. We're down to four pools that we'll be watching for the course of the summer," Wasserman said about the lack of staff.

The county is considering raising wages for lifeguard positions, and Supervisor Wasserman is now proposing a partnership between area schools and the county to teach swimming and lifeguarding.

"We have to teach swim lessons for the individual to learn how to swim, but we also need to teach lifeguarding so kids can get jobs and so that people can be safe," Wasserman said.

But for this summer you'll need to be extra careful in the water, know your swimming ability and if you're at a beach on Lake Michigan be aware of rip tides.

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