Mike Bloomberg, like many billionaires, is apparently only generous as long as it’s convenient. That’s a lesson his staffers are learning now, per The New York Times. Bloomberg hired a massive nationwide staff to work his presidential campaign and paid them double what other campaigns were offering, according to Times, and the former New York City mayor even offered to keep paying them until the election — even if he dropped out of the race, which he did last week.
The generous offer enticed many experienced strategists to join the campaign. But now, those field organizers and directors across America are finding out that they won’t be paid through November after all. Not only that, but the severance some of the staffers are receiving isn’t even in the form of money. According to the Times, hundreds of staffers received emails telling them they would only be paid through the end of March — but that after that, they could at least keep the electronics given to them by the campaign as severance.
“We sincerely appreciate your commitment and dedication over the past few months!” said the email, which was obtained by the Times. “As a token of our appreciation, we are offering you the opportunity to keep your laptop and iPhone.” The email also noted that the employees would be expected to pay taxes on the devices. Staffers were expected to sign non-disclosure agreements and were not allowed to discuss their termination; the Times reports now that staffers are asking to be released from the agreements, citing unfair treatment.
In a statement given to the Times, the campaign said that it always planned to end some employees’ involvement after March, when the states in play during the election narrowed. “As we’ve said over the course of the campaign, this election will come down to six battleground states,” the statement said.
“It’s imperative that we invest there with staff and infrastructure. Staff who were working in non-battleground states and would like to learn about future opportunities in the battleground states are being asked to let us know so we can consider them for jobs there.” Perhaps they can even let them know via their Bloomberg-approved campaign Apple products.