So FOX 4 in Kansas City uncovered a story involving the Kansas City Chiefs and the ticket-takers and parking attendants at Arrowhead Stadium. Apparently, those employees were previously allowed to go into Arrowhead to watch the game after their work was done in the parking lot. According to the FOX 4 report, the Chiefs have now told them they will not be allowed into the game after their work is done.
I've got some thoughts on this from both angles, and a proposed solution.
On the one hand, I can feel for these workers. I'm sure the majority of them are Chiefs fans and for some I would also imagine that being able to go into the games is part of the reason they're working at Arrowhead in the first place. It's sort of like this coffee shop I worked in during college (you know, the same college education that did nothing to prepare me for my life as a sports blogger). We were allowed to eat the coffee shop food for free on our lunch break but then a new manager came in and said we would have to pay for it. As employees, we were pretty pissed about that because that free lunch was such a tiny part of their operation yet it was a nice perk for the employees. From that standpoint, I can understand what these employees are thinking.
On the other hand, it's not like they're not being paid for the work they're doing. They are indeed paid employees and they receive paychecks like the rest of us. One of the stadium employees told FOX 4 KC, "When we go and work hard at the gates and knowing that it's hot outside or freezing in January, even during the season, you get your benefit of going and watching the game." That's true but the benefit of working at Arrowhead that also matters is the paycheck, which they receive.
If I were running the show at Arrowhead...I'd give this fight up. There's probably more to the story from the Chiefs perspective but the way its been presented to us publicly makes the Chiefs look like they're fighting a pointless fight. The workers are in standing room-only -- and we know that stadium isn't filled to capacity every week -- so I don't think there's a boatload of lost revenue involved and I would think the average fan would side with the employees because they're just like us -- fans.
My solution? Put those workers in the yellow seats that are such an eye-sore on TV. Seriously. If those seats aren't being used, why not allow the ticket-takers and parking attendants use them? Think about it from a home-field advantage standpoint. The more people in the stadium, the louder it gets on third down. Put 'em in the yellow seats and tell them to be loud. We know Arrowhead isn't filled to the capacity so I don't know what the Chiefs are gaining by keeping these employees out.
At a time when the fans have felt slapped across the side of the face by the owners and players throughout the NFL lockout negotiations, the Chiefs could have picked a better battle than this.
So how do we feel about this? What's the solution? Should the Chiefs pick another battle and let the ticket-takers and parking attendants watch the game? Or should they stick with their new policy of not allowing them to watch the game?
Let's challenge the Chiefs to listen to the fans on this one. Give us your vote in the poll.