How to catch a milk thief in the public service?

ThatUniStudent 1 June 2011 96

Hi, I’m posting this on behalf of a person who bugged me to friend. This friend works in a government department as a public slave servant. They like a cup of coffee now and then as they work shift work and like to stay alert. They also like to have breakfast at work some early days. So they usually take in a 2 litre bottle of milk now and then. They clearly label it as theirs. The problem, it seems, is people steal it.

At first it was small amounts, not worth worrying about. Now it seems wholesale. My friend had taken to marking the level of milk with a texta. People got around this by either:

  • Rubbing out the mark badly and drawing a new one in.
  • Adding new marks.
  • Worst of all, adding water to the milk.

In the last case my friend has twice seen the same co-worker remove a cup full of milk which that person hides away, then add a cup full of water to the milk.

Lately, someone has simply taken to stealing the whole 2 litre bottle of milk. They work in a large open plan office of about 200 people. They are not sure who has been doing it. They would like to find out. As the office is in a secure area, use of cameras is not permitted.

My spin on this is that my friend should just lock their milk in their desk and be damned if it is warm. Or just live with the occasional theft.

But I am sure many of you have far more devious, humerus, downright evil creative ways of catching a milk thief. Please remember though that any method should not incapacitate a person or affect their permanent ability to work, because that might get my friend in hot water.


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96 Responses to How to catch a milk thief in the public service?
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kobra kobra 2:09 pm 06 Sep 11

As its a secure area, instead of a camera use your mobile phone(tape it to some side of the wall or behind some appliance), start recording,…get it back end of the day..grab the thief..

PBO PBO 1:54 pm 06 Sep 11

Label it “Fresh squeezed penis milk”.

Silveras Silveras 1:45 pm 06 Sep 11

One idea would be to lace the milk with laxatives and then the waiting game begins…

Homeless Homeless 9:30 pm 02 Jun 11

Genie said :

deejay said :

Genie said :

I’m confused – where in the public service does this person work?

Every Government department I’ve ever worked for provides milk for use of tea and coffee.

Let me guess, you’ve only worked for central agencies, right? Us plebs in portfolio and CAC agencies have to buy our own.

Even when I was at a tiny division within the ACT Public Service, we had milk supplied along with tea and coffee. I’ve never worked anywhere that DOESN’T supply these basics..

The signs at some workplaces stating that the milk is only to be used to tea and coffee and not people’s cereal or milo drinks cracks me right up but !

The OP’s mate works in an office with 200 people and is a shift worker. It dosn’t take a genius to work out that the milk does not last for 200 people and all night.

Genie Genie 6:50 pm 02 Jun 11

deejay said :

Genie said :

I’m confused – where in the public service does this person work?

Every Government department I’ve ever worked for provides milk for use of tea and coffee.

Let me guess, you’ve only worked for central agencies, right? Us plebs in portfolio and CAC agencies have to buy our own.

Even when I was at a tiny division within the ACT Public Service, we had milk supplied along with tea and coffee. I’ve never worked anywhere that DOESN’T supply these basics..

The signs at some workplaces stating that the milk is only to be used to tea and coffee and not people’s cereal or milo drinks cracks me right up but !

Erg0 Erg0 5:15 pm 02 Jun 11

As the saying goes, “set a thief to catch a thief”. A quick skim through some old RiotACT posts should assist you in locating a suitably qualified individual who’s serving weekend detention, and thus free during the work week.

jessieduck jessieduck 5:14 pm 02 Jun 11

Nothing wrong with breast milk folks!

The_Bulldog The_Bulldog 5:11 pm 02 Jun 11

I’m confused – where in the public service does this person work?

Every Government department I’ve ever worked for provides milk for use of tea and coffee.

And people wonder why the APS gets a bad wrap…

Ryoma Ryoma 5:09 pm 02 Jun 11

I suggest a mousetrap, attached to the back of the 2 litre milk bottle. Ensure that your milk is at the back of the fridge, so it doesn’t inconvenience any of your honest colleagues. Only the person who grabs your bottle with stealing intent will feel the pain, drop the milk, and howl loudly enough to be heard across the floor 🙂

Sigh….I should use my powers for good….

deejay deejay 4:47 pm 02 Jun 11

Genie said :

I’m confused – where in the public service does this person work?

Every Government department I’ve ever worked for provides milk for use of tea and coffee.

Let me guess, you’ve only worked for central agencies, right? Us plebs in portfolio and CAC agencies have to buy our own.

Genie Genie 12:59 pm 02 Jun 11

I’m confused – where in the public service does this person work?

Every Government department I’ve ever worked for provides milk for use of tea and coffee.

Sgt.Bungers Sgt.Bungers 10:56 am 02 Jun 11

Have your friend spit in their bottle of milk. Have them make sure there is always at least one person there to witness them do this. Word will eventually get around.

And/or write on the back of each milk bottle, something along the lines of “f*** off, i’ve spat in this, get your own damned milk.” Anyone who complains about the language will have only seen the message if they’ve taken the bottle out of the fridge.

I used to write something similar on the under side of my butter lid’s at work 🙂

ThatUniStudent ThatUniStudent 10:26 am 02 Jun 11

carnardly said :

tell your friend to grow some b**** if he saw a milk thief in the action.

Loudly ask “what the fluff are you doing with my milk you cretin? Can’t you read???

Buy your own” and embarrass him into not doing it again.

He had 2 chances that he utterly blew.

No wonder they keep doing it.

Apparently that has something to do with rank. And I’m not talking about the smell of the milk.

As an update, my friend has started buying UHT milk and putting it in their desk drawer. But for the sake of amusement, they let their 5 year old slurp the milk from a 2 litre bottle. Their 5 year old has a bad cold and does not understand that it is bad form to let their snot drip into the bottle. For even more amusement, they added some baking powder to the milk which should give the thief an upset tummy.

Chop71 Chop71 8:57 am 02 Jun 11

wow 65 posts!!! I guess people of Canberra will cry over spilt milk

cubicle01 cubicle01 8:56 am 02 Jun 11

Solidarity said :

Label it as breast milk.

+1
… on second thought surely a pube would recognise the incongruence of setting, container size and breast milk… or maybe not.

Holierthanthou Holierthanthou 8:52 am 02 Jun 11

This is what they do at the Public Service all day? No wonder it takes them so long to get things done.

Actually stealing milk increases productivity. So does protecting milk from being stolen. Both activities result in milk being readily available to reduce the time needed for to prepare (ruin) tea/coffee.

This sort of thing happens just as frequently in the private sector.

luther_bendross luther_bendross 8:43 am 02 Jun 11

Not quite sure how to get it, but a little bit of silver nitrate on the lid will do the trick. It stains skin a nice black colour for a few days at least, giving you heaps of time to ID your thief.

Might not wanna drink from the same milk bottle though.

russh russh 12:58 am 02 Jun 11

spit in it

nothappyjan nothappyjan 11:35 pm 01 Jun 11
Siren Siren 9:21 pm 01 Jun 11

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