I have a question regarding the word "staff."
Does it take "was" or "were" in the following sentences:
All staff was/were dressed in navy blue uniforms.
The staff was/were on duty to assist with any problems.
Does the word "all" in the first sentence refer to "all of them," making staff plural?
In American English, collective nouns like staff are used as singulars if the entire staff acts as one unit, The staff arrives at 7:00 every morning, and as a plural if you are speaking of the actions of individuals, The staff take turns cleaning the bathrooms.
I believe that this is a pecularity of American English, and other English speakers follow the British example of always treating collective nouns as plurals.