New York City may be dealing with rising crime and a homelessness problem, but mayor Eric Adams has made it clear he is willing to pay big bucks for someone to tackle the city’s rat problem.
Adams announced the new position of rat tsar, more formally known as the Citywide Director of Rodent Mitigation, on Thursday and the job comes with a six figure pay check.
However, “bloodthirsty” candidates must posses some unique qualifications including having a “swashbuckling attitude, crafty humour, and general aura of badassery”, according to the city’s job posting.
“There’s NOTHING I hate more than rats,” Adams said in a Tweet Thursday, “If you have the drive, determination, and killer instinct needed to fight New York City’s relentless rat population – then your dream job awaits.”
Based in City Hall, the rat czar will be paid $120,000 to $170,000 a year and must possess a “virulent vehemence for vermin” as well as a bachelor’s degree and proficiency in Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
The job posting adds: “Despite their successful public engagement strategy and cheeky social media presence, rats are not our friends. Rodents spread disease, damage homes and wiring and even attempt to control the movements of kitchen staffers in an effort to take over human jobs.”
The position comes amid new sanitation initiatives, including increased funding to get rid of the vermin.
The NYC Sanitation Department also recently released a $48 t-shirt which reads: “The rats don’t run this city. We do. NYC Sanitation.”
The position is not unprecedented, deputy mayor under Rudy Gulliani, Joseph Lhota, was appointed as rat czar and touted the credentials when he ran for mayor in 2013.
It turns out everyone, or at least the vast majority of New Yorkers, hates rats – making a priority of getting rid of them is a political no-brainer for the city’s mayors.
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In August, Xochitl Gonzalez, a writer for The Atlantic, penned an open letter to Adams, covering issues from rising crime to housing.
But one line in particular stood out: “I am here to help you get a win. A simple way to get New Yorkers back in your corner. Two words, one person: rat czar.”
However, whoever takes the recreated role will likely face challenges as the city’s budget faces cuts.
The job description even describes ridding the city of the rodents as attempting “the impossible”.