Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Meeting Expectations: TYC holds public hearing on use of force

A Travis County judge said holding a public hearing is the least the Texas Youth Commission could do before changing its use of force policy, and since they finally held that hearing yesterday, apparently blogging about it is the least I can do here on Grits.

A regular reader emails today to demand, "Don't even think about leaving town without posting on the use of force hearing yesterday. You are LATE as it is."

So it's not just TYC which must meet expectations, apparently, but me, as well! I couldn't make it to the hearing; I'd already said my piece when I submitted written comments, and was waiting till I had a little more information. But now I feel obligated (since I'm "LATE," after all!) to go ahead and link to MSM coverage of TYC's hearing yesterday to evaluate its proposed use of force policy. Here's the coverage I saw:
I have no idea what the agency will do here: I hope they go back to the old policy, which was based in a court settlement and didn't need changing, but they could easily approve the same one Acting Executive Director Dimitria Pope first proposed on August 2. At this point, you never know.

SEE ALSO: Public policy report from Texas Criminal Justice Coalition (pdf) on TYC Pepper Spray Policy.

RELATED: For the period I'll be in N'awlins, I've put up a reader poll asking, which will happen first at the Texas Youth Commission:
  • The National Guard or state police are called in to guard TYC facilities because they're shortstaffed
  • Acting Executive Director Dimitria Pope is relieved of her position
  • A new conservator is appointed
  • TYC announces more facility closures
  • The 81st (2009) Texas Legislature convenes
Let me know your opinion in the sidebar poll and in the comments. And play nice, while I'm away, folks! Please? :)

107 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure anything significant will come from TYC itself or the state lege generally.

The pepper spray debate is turning into something of a trap argument, a distraction, and I don't see that changing anytime soon.
BB

Anonymous said...

BB,

I'm not real sure what a "trap argument" is, but the pepper spray debate is not simply a distraction. It's representative of the philosophical clash between the current adult corrections-minded leadership and juvenile justice-oriented treatment proponents.

Anonymous said...

4:08,

Yes, I totally agree that it is an important piece of the overall adult-corrections mentality of the moment.

But I wonder if we aren't missing the forest for the trees just a little.

That is, I see advocates getting drawn into endless arguments about the best methods for de-escalating potentially violent situations, which often lead away from any mention of the adult-correctional environment that makes nonviolent de-escalation unlikely, if not impossible, and presents staff with an impossible set of options.

My concern is that we wind up missing the forest for the trees, that the pepper spray debate becomes an end in itself, and we lose focus on the big picture.

IMO, this represents a tacit victory for the TDCJ transplants. Instead of arguing about whether to adopt a Missouri-style plan, or about the treatment-oriented proposals of the Blue Ribbon report, we're arguing about when its acceptable for staff to spray in existing facilities, with ridiculously unacceptable youth-to-staff ratios.

Juvenile justice advocates cede too much ground to their opponents by doing this.

Bill B.

Anonymous said...

I agree, Bill. While when/how to use pepper spray is not an insignificant issue, the fact that it has become such a central item just reinforces that the current administration has missed the point. The core issue is not just how to address violent/disruptive behavior in TYC but why TYC is having so much violent and disruptive behavior. The chronic answer is an insufficient number of adequately trained staff. The new additonal answer is the absence of a coherent youth treatment philosophy. If they would acknoweldge and effectively tackle these issues, then pepper-spray would not need to be such an issue.
>Don Brantley

Anonymous said...

Well all I have to say is this and its a fact.

They better get off the pepper spray issue and start tending to the forest because the trees are calling in sick, staging sick outs, and kids are out of control and no one is willing to get them back in control. Kids are becoming well aware that no one can touch them in tyc. Before long there will not be anyone to watch the kids as well as spray them. I have never seen this so bad in all the years I have been with TYC and personally it is getting scary in the trenches. That is a fact.

Anonymous said...

Bill,

The peperspray issue is not a distraction but the one issue that is in the courthouse. It is also an issue that is legally clear under the Morales decision and something that can be acted on before the next leislative session.

Size of facilities, Missouri treatment, and the Blue Ribbin Panel are not something that is going to be addressed before 2009, if then. Those issues require legislative action and money. If you have not already noticed the current TYC administrators show no inclination to entertain those ideas. The issue is whether those administrators are going to be allowed to abuse youth through the use of pepperspray and the general lack of direction or refusal to follow existing law.


Howard A. Hickman

Anonymous said...

The Texas Youth Commission Organizational Chart is currently under revision.
Last Updated: August 22, 2007

Called lack of leadership ??

Anonymous said...

"That is, I see advocates getting drawn into endless arguments about the best methods for de-escalating potentially violent situations, which often lead away from any mention of the adult-correctional environment that makes nonviolent de-escalation unlikely, if not impossible, and presents staff with an impossible set of options."

One option in an effort to de-escalate, that I can imagine: If it was my child, I would treat him like a child. I would let him have some time to himself.

If he escalates I will slowly dim the lights and muffle the noises of escalation, while seeing to his safety as well. When he is calmer we can talk.

I wouldn't pepper spray my own child. I don't think.

Anonymous said...

Grits, I'm surprised you have any doubt that the TDCJrs will just implement their old policy, or should I say illegal executive order, as quickly as they can without really considering any of the input. Pope didn't even come to listen to it.

Anonymous said...

Why is it that staff are being allowed to lock youth in their rooms at mart because they do not have enough staff?

Why is this facility so out of control? It really cannot get much worse and OC will not make any difference once a youth or staff gets seriously injured or killed.

Mr Will Harrell please take a trip here and talk with the youth and staff unannounced and see if you see what we are seeing before it is too late.

Anonymous said...

I've watched this debate on Grits for a while, and as a lawyer who has had nothing to do with TYC, ever, I can't help but wonder what all the hub-bub is about.

I suspect that my view on the TYC is the same as that of the public at large. Basically, that the TYC is simply a prison for younger offenders. The debate on whether or not to use pepper spray seems absurd to me. If you need it, use it. If they act up and may turn violent, use it.

Those of you on the inside are wondering what model to use, Texas vs. Missouri, vs. some blue ribbon panel recommendations, and those of us on the outside are wondering what the hell you're talking about. The closest you ever got to me realizing there was a problem was when the news hit about all of the kids who were still in the system but should have been released. Then they were. Now, what's the big deal?

If there's more to the story, get the word out. Because so far all I see is a bunch of people who appear to be employees of TYC who sit around and complain that their job is too dangerous and doesn't pay enough. It sounds like you're more worried about your own conditions than that of the kids.

Anonymous said...

9:04 perfectly illustrates my earlier point that the pepper spray issue, while important, has diverted public attention away from the larger issues.

All I can say, 9:04, is that the word has been gotten out plenty over the past several months but has fallen off the public radar screen lately... with one exception, the pepper spray issue. And it has clouded things to the point where a newcomer to the TYC crisis can't easily learn what is going on, what issues are at stake.

This benefits the current regime of refugees from the adult prison system. The parameters of the public discussion are in their comfort zone. We're talking only about control and not rehabilitation. How convenient.

TYC isn't supposed to be a "prison for younger offenders."

In fact, the routine use of the phrase "youth prisons" to describe TYC facilities is anathema to the core mission of juvenile justice. The phrase would have sickened the reformers who invented juvenile justice a century ago - and they dealt with murderers, gang members, and rapists too.

Eye, meet ball, and don't let him out of your sight.

Bill Bush

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Bill. You hit the nail on the head in your last two paragraphs. This guy that posted above yours represents why TYC has a problem. The general public does not understand, nor do they care about the difference between youth and adult corrections. It's simple black and white - if a person does a crime, ergo, that person is a criminal, regardless of age. This guy claims to be a lawyer for crying out loud!

His comments about the employees caring more about money and safety betray a common bias that most citizens have about state employees. While I have heard numerous comments about staff safety, I can't recall any about being underpaid. Unless, of course he is referring to the JCOs who were complaining because they had been promised overtime pay for working outrageous hours and then were told they would not get paid. Gee, I wonder if that "lawyer" would get upset if a client refused to pay him? He'd take the sucker to court.

The real issue here is not the pepper spray per se; it is the move further and further away from a rehabilitation that the pepper spray represents. Old Salty

Anonymous said...

I think we will see units downsized then closed as the staff shortage grows worse. Next staff will be forced to other locations to shore up failing units or face termination. More staff will resign causing more units to downsize or close and on the cycle goes. Pope may be replaced but it is far too late to save TYC. National Guard, TDCJ staff, and state police will be called in to man TYC units as the staff exodus continues. The governor may even try to force TYC staff to remain on the job by some form of coercive action. More youth will be released or placed on TDCJ parole. Counties will be told to deal with the juvenile offenders locally. The staff shortage at Mart 2 is a clear indication of a crisis at TYC. Start warming up the contract care machine! Redirect all that tax money to contract care companies who are ready to serve. I could almost believe this is a well planned take down of TYC to put some heavy cash in the “Right Pockets”!

Anonymous said...

The only reason the pepper spray became an issue is based upon how it was delivered, period. When you take a substance like this and just hand it out to all staff with no training or parameters yes it gets headlines!!!

Same thing with the overtime issue, if you have over 800 vacancies the state still receives this money it's called lapsed money. TYC had always function on this premise. And had the money to pay the overtime. But, when your leaders do not understand this and pull the rug out from under the JCO's and say were not paying this anymore it creates headlines.

9:04 if you had any clue what you were talking about some may find you credible but our current leadership could have avoided all of this with some well thought out plans (Best Practices) and solicited responses from field staff, instead they come across with their previous training and expertise from TDCJ and it is not going to fly. I am sure TDCJ has some intelligent Administrators working for them that understands the message makes a huge difference when you release a press clip, TYC has not seen these folks.

We are all getting tired of being hammered by the press but this could end real soon with effective leadership and well thought out solutions.

Anonymous said...

I just worked a shift at Mart and it is out of control, no staff, calling in sick, out on FMLA, youth being locked in their rooms because we have no coverage. Yeah we have come a long way in the past 8 months.

Anonymous said...

Why is Central Office revieving a brand new makeover, all the cubicles going and offices being built, is this where all the money is going. Our travel budget is out of control, no restrictions. I sure am glad our elected leaders are still out on vacation enjoying the holidays, you did such a great job rebuilding TYC. By the way where is Ray Brookins and Hernandez from WTSS, are they still out on bond. Yes we destroyed an agency and these two are still roaming the streets.

Anonymous said...

It would be a perfect world if our critics of TYC could walk in our shoes everyday including the lege.

Then all would understand where the problems really are. Most would be so surprised and more sympathic to those who are working towards getting a better TYC for kids and employees.

Another point that is missed also is that if the Staff at TYC basic life needs are not met then the kids needs are not met. Was it Maslow who developed the theory of meeting the basic needs of the child when he is growing up. If he is cold and hungry or has an unmet need it will not be able to learn due to the fact that the unmet need is its top priorty?

TYC as a whole has unmet needs that are clouding the success of TYC and until those needs are met, TYC will not grow into the place that it should be.

The staff that work at TYC is the Tree Trunk, it takes in water and nutrients that the Tree needs. The kids are the branches that the Tree produces. If the Trunk is failing the limbs will fail also. That is what no one can see. Once you fix that then pepper spray will not be an issue anymore. No matter what policy is adopted.

Anonymous said...

yes, I heard the moves within central office cost $250,000. Contractors had to do the moving, phones had to be reset, and computer equipment reconfigured. And, I heard that the money came from lapsed JCO salaries (traditionally used to pay overtime!)

I actually think the moves are good and the office will function better, but the timing with stopping overtime payments? Well, that seems a little fishy.

Anonymous said...

It's just dumb and a total lack of leadership. Somebody needs to ask Hurley for a song and dance response.

Anonymous said...

In answer to your Question Scott, the first thing that will happen is the 81st legislature will convene before this anything in this mess is solved.

And since our legislature is like the Wiley Miller cartoon with a single slave lashed to all of the boat oars, and a single drummer talking to a little man in a suit who says "It's my job to make it look good on paper, it's your job to make it work." Nothing is going to happen.

Anonymous said...

9:04 if you had any clue what you were talking about

I think I readily admitted that I did not. And I've been paying attention to the issue lately. You and others (I'm talking about you, 9:59) may see that as me being an idiot, but my underlying point is that the public doesn't know enough. I know conditions are bad. But as often as not, people here complain about forced overtime, budgets for sick days and overtime, shifting money from certain budget items to cover overtime, that there aren't enough guards to that it's not safe--for other guards (not for the kids, for Pete's sake!).

Some do mention the condition of the kids, but it often sounds like an afterthought in light of the complaints regarding the working conditions. And I'm OK with complaining about working conditions, I wish mine were better. And I sure as heck wouldn't want to do your job, it is surely difficult and underpaid. The primary cure to fixing your job, however, is to get another one.

If you truly care about the kids, quit bitching about your overtime and then saying "oh yeah, and the kids need better care too." You think the word has gotten out, but I'm telling you it hasn't. People view TYC as a youth prison. For better or worse, that's your starting point. Change their minds about that, and they'll start to care more, or even at all. Because right now they don't.

Anonymous said...

9:04/8:16 First and perhaps foremost, I do not consider you an idiot just because you have not walked in tyc (preferably black) shoes. You have effectively raised the issue of why few Texans are concerned about TYC: to wit: [ :- ) ] as an educated person with at least a passing knowledge of criminal law, not getting through to you means getting through to the rest of Texas may be even more difficult than most of us realized. In response to your comments, I offer some thoughts:

Too often we get trapped in the idea that what worked for me growing up works on everybody. For example, if I got caught “going too far” with a girl, the look from a parent (hers or mine), the restrictions (grounding for example) or the beating (from her older brother, father or my father) would have made a difference. The same holds for stealing and other criminal acts. TYC kids are not NORMAL (keeping in mind that the word Normal means what MOST people DO not what is good or right). Those interventions in the community did not work for whatever reason. Many normal teenagers might contemplate punching out a teacher they don’t like, but very few plan it out and get their friends to join them and then take pleasure in kicking the victim in the head. Many normal teenagers will “borrow” the family car, essentially going for a joy ride; few are involved in stealing a total of 33 relatively new cars with their friends, then burning 32 (they got caught in number 33) so there would be no evidence. In other words, what worked for you rarely works for these kids or they would not be here (they are only 3% of the kids that get in trouble, after all).
Childhood, both legally and marginally psychologically, does not end until 18. Except for the permitted practice of committing juvenile offenders to TYC or trying them as adults, there is less difference between an 8 year old and 16 year old than there is between a 25 year old and a 50 year old. The practice of considering criminals as equivalents regardless of age suggests that the 3 year old who takes somebody else’s toy needs to be incarcerated for at least a couple of years. Note: the issue is not that the child should be “punished” (corrected, receive negative consequences) but that the punishment should be the same as an adult’s.
Additionally, it can get very expensive. Beginning with Gault and extending in Texas to Morales, the Supremes have ruled that juveniles have certain rights that are in addition to the rights of adults. With Morales, the then TYC budget went from $4 million to about $250 million per budget. That cost does not include the expenses from future crime to victims, law enforcement, court and prison; nor does it count the cost of taking a foolish child and turning him to a bitter adult who takes pleasure in hurting others because he was hurt.
You missed the concept of safety, albeit because so many posts have emphasized the danger to staff (in part because that is the assertion behind more pepper spray). If you have 1 staff for 20 kids, it means while you may successfully intervene in an assault (staged?), you aren't there to prevent the sexual assault at the other end of the dorm.
Finally, as an attorney, you may work tax law for 20 years. Now, after firing everybody that knew anything about constitutional/criminal law, go successfully defend a suspect under the Patriot Act... operant word being successfully.

In any case, thanks for reading this blog... maybe we can make a convert of you.

Anonymous said...

12:50:

I see where you're going, but the analogy at the end isn't quite right for me. Regardless, I understand the difference between a "not normal" kid who needs counseling in order to try and help them along to be a (more) normal adult and kids who are simply younger criminals. Kids assaulting a teacher en masse or stealing and burning dozens of cars? That's a different thing. They're criminals.

The problem we have, and have always had and will always have, is that kids like these have no parent who cares at the point in their life when they're supposed to learn how to be a human being.

To a lesser level (lesser on the criminal scale, more on the number of kids scale), public schools have the same problem. People blame taking God out of the classroom for the sorry state of our schools, others expect teachers to be parents to their kids. But if that opportunity is missed and the child does not learn it on their own, I don't believe any youth facility or teacher or religion can put those formative lessons back into a child's head.

That's the general perception. Some kids are troubled, but can be helped. Others are criminals. Some of those criminals are criminals because they're troubled. Others are just young criminals.

You can't save them all, and taking a touchy-feely approach globally just won't cut it.

Stan said...

1:40, you said:

But if that opportunity is missed and the child does not learn it on their own, I don't believe any youth facility or teacher or religion can put those formative lessons back into a child's head.

I can't speak to what a youth facility can or can't put into a child's head, but I can tell you that decades of research back up the fact that a good youth rehabilitation program can reduce recidivism. TYC has had, in the past, nationally recognized programs that had measurable results in giving youth the life skills necessary to prevent them from continuing to commit crimes after their release. The capital offender program at Giddings is (was?) a very good example of this.

Beginning from that premise, there is both an economic and a moral question that needs to be asked. Economically, what price is society is willing to pay? Would you rather have your state government spend money up front to provide those services to the youth? Or would you rather pay on the back end in increased crime? Morally, we have to ask if we are going to simply warehouse these kids until they are old enough to go to adult prison, or if we're going to try to provide them with opportunities that their families or communities never gave them.

Call it touchy-feely if you want, but there is statistical evidence that you can save a lot of these kids if you're willing to put forward the effort and resources.

Anonymous said...

Love that exchange. Regardless of the offense and the age...Its criminal. The public does not want to know what goes on inside a correctional facility. The publis expects to be safe in their community and those individuals who cannot act accordingly should be removed from it and return when they pay their debt to society. That is it in the simplest form. Yes its sad what occured in WTTS and other locations. However, that is what happens to bad folk. That is life. If you not happy with your wages or the conditions of your employment......Find another job. So many bitter people here.

Anonymous said...

I don't want my tax dollars used on thugs. The majority of those kids have it better in TYC than they do at home. Sounds like kid welfare to me.

Anonymous said...

Bill B: "A century. . ."! Yes that is the main problem; TIMES HAVE CHANGED! The "kids", "Children", "youth" are in fact violators of the law! They should be treated like the criminals they are. Can you guess where the majority of these offenders will live as adults?

Wake up to the real world Bill; get out of the classroom and into the trenches!

9:04: You are so right (I really do not like agreeing with a lawyer)!

TYC employees: You don't want to gas them; you would rather break their bones????? Of course not. My gosh! TYC has needed a change for decades. It is a shame the elected officials emptied the lake without refilling it but you need to quit flopping around. Whining will not fill it back up!

Anonymous said...

Stan,

I would have to agree with you not only on the statistical side but also from my 15+ years working in Juvenile Corrections. I have seen the positive long term effects that caring staff and a solid treatment program can make on a youth's life.

For those that believe that bad things happen to bad people I would recommend that those "good" people take a moment to honestly imagine yourself in these kids environments before making such a statement. I suggest this not to be huggy/touchy but with hopes that those that are quick to judge may attempt to obtain an honest honest understanding of where the youth is coming from.

What life choices would we have made if our mother was a crack addict, we didn't know our father and age 11 we were responsible for feeding and caring for two younger siblings (ages 2 and 6)in the Dallas projects? I think many of our fates would be very similar to those youth currently in TYC.

With regards to the ongoing pepper spray debate I agree that it is a valid argument that now seems endless. Unfortunately, while this heated debate continues there is no attention directed to the current insane staffing ratios, the general treatment program and it's slow realization or what specialized treatment the youth are currently receiving.

Anonymous said...

9:04,

If I were a lawyer who did not know the difference between criminal and juvenile law, I do not believe I would express my ignorance. As a lawyer, if you truly are one, you should know words have meaning and that long ago it was decided that there is an age of criminal culpability. Surely you do not believe that a two year old who shoots and kills someone is a criminal. The law establishes where juvenile justice ends and criminal justice begins.
One is a civil matter and civil rules apply, the other is a criminal matter and criminal rules apply. It is like saying the same rules apply to income taxes as apply to user fees at a county park. Did you somehow get out of law school without taking criminal law?

Howard A. Hickman

Anonymous said...

I agree that treatment can be effective for some. And my statements about a better job aren't bitter, it's reality. Many on here (other threads moreso than this one) complain more about their own conditions than that of the kids. That speaks volumes for what they are really worried about--themselves.

My main point is that at this point it appears that the big problems (holding kids beyond their sentences and atrocious conditions at a few facilities) have been fixed. And like I said, I've actually been paying attention. That's the perception you folks are dealing with--that the level of problems that still exist in TYC are acceptable.

As for imagining myself in their place, well, that's the difference between them and me. My worst crime is drinking while underage. I speed too much. And I may have taken a little liberties with a couple of tax deductions in the past. But I think that I am the kind of person that would never have assaulted a teacher and never would have burned 32 cars and never would have killed someone except in self defense. They made their decisions, and many of them would and will do it again.

Where's the answer? Who knows. But being a Democrat, I'm inclined to try to fix societal problems. Being a pragmatist I'm inclined to believe that it won't happen.

Anonymous said...

4:36, 4:38 and to a certain extent that "lawyer" who has been posting here provide an explanation of why we have a problem. I think they fairly well represent the majority of voters in Texas. There is very little interest in spending money on rehabilitation. There is almost no understanding of the difference between kids and adults who commit crimes. It is all about "doing time" and "paying debt" to society - in other words, warehousing.

The very folks who write our laws reflect this mentality. That's why all the fuss about kids who have "served beyond their time;" meaning those whose behavior has caused them to be held beyond their minimum length of stay. I used to ask, what part of the word minimum do they not understand. I realise now that I was asking the wrong question. The legislators are just reflecting the views of their constituencies that rehabilitation costs too much, and that kids in TYC have it way better than they deserve, that they should be locked up for a specified length of time as payment for their crime and then let out to continue their lives of crime. Wow! And we call ourselves a "Christian" country! Old Salty

Whitsfoe said...

Give yourself a code name 6:02. I want to hear more of this banter.

Its intriguing to hear an outsiders observations of these comments and what we’re saying. I don't find myself disagreeing with you because your exactly right, the public just doesn't have an idea. Like we said in March, no one will care after the session.

spearshaker said...

9:04 and Old Salty, 12:50 speaking. Realized how close I came to getting into an arguement of whose bias is the right one. It's strange, Jesus required nothing but belief in Him for forgiveness and entry into heaven, but our Christian heritage at times not only demands an eye for an eye, but seems to mimic Islam with cutting off a hand. I once interviewed with a Social Worker at LaTuna Federal Prison in Anthony Tx/NM. He pointed out that we would always need a Leavenworth maximum security. On the other hand, he noted that if we opened a prison that "cured" criminals, got them educated and trained, even got them into good jobs that paid so well they repaid in taxes any costs of providing the treatment, it would be rejected out of hand in favor of a punitive system that turned out more hardened and brutal criminals who were so stigmatized that there were no jobs and criminal acts were the only resort for food, because criminals need to be punished.
9:04 if you do not want to go to the trouble of creating a nickname (only requires signing up with google), just remind us that you are 9:04. Again, thanks for joining us, we need you to remind us we don't have the only point of view and certainly not the only answers.

Bronco Billy said...

Here 9:04... your new name is 90410... not on TV anymore, but what the hell. I gave Bronco Billy his name so I thought I'd help you out too.

Anonymous said...

What ever happened to the "Humpster", I guess the violation of a court order and the violation of the law means nothing anymore in this agency unless of course your in with the Pope.

Anonymous said...

I am not a TYC employee but I have followed the TYC ordeal very closely since the first news story hit in February.

I have worked with the kids as a volunteer in several TYC facilities my heart goes out to both the staff and youth. I have been blessed to meet and observe staff (of various levels) at each facility that were patient and dedicated and appear to genuinely care about the kids.

It kills me to think of how many of these people TYC is losing knowing they will be not easily replaced. In addition, how many staff (again from the highest levels down) see and suffer from the corruption and injustice but are afraid to speak out.

For those dedicated and exhausted staff please know that there are those of us on the outside that still care. Not all of us look at TYC as the bad guys. We keep you in our prayers and we hurt for you and your families. We know what is happening is wrong on every level and just like you we are desperately fighting to try and see the light at the end of this very dark tunnel.

Anonymous said...

I forgot to mention that the outsiders also realize that Mr. Humphrey is an idiot and wonder how he is still employed.

Anonymous said...

Humpster, please Humpster, we do not allow him the dignity to be called Mr. Humphrey.

Anonymous said...

Why of why did they bring Wallace Brown back to WTSS. He was close to Harrison, the Regional Director for the West region (Ayo) was close to Harrison, plus closed his eyes when Brookins was on campus.
Once again why are we trying to bring down WTSS? Hollis may not have the fortitude to stand up to him after his recent adventure (imposed state vacation) but we need help quick. Wallace still needs his secretary to proof read all of his e-mails.
The Boot Camp is about to close we picked up more youth from them today, Gallegos lost my vote and all others in this area should do the same.

Anonymous said...

Why would they close the only 120 bed facility the agency has? It's brand new and they built 20 mobile home pads two years ago. Can you imagine the cost to the taxpayers this will cost? The issue is staffing but the solution is the school district asked 4 months ago to buy TYC 20 brand new mobile homes for staff quarters, why is this not being looked into, could it be that it makes sense and we are being lead by those that have no sense of direction?

The agency has to close 700 more beds, this is a fact, they will not tell you this because of the fear of staff quitting before their plans materialize. Whose is next, Vernon, West Texas, Sheffield, or the oldest TYC Institution in the agency that is in bad need of repairs, Corsicana.

We know that contracts beds are not the solution, so what we have left is throwing kids out on the street as soon as possible and hope they do not come back for a few months. Is this the plan? What are the plans for TYC, does anyone know, seriously think about this for a minute, why are we still doing the Atilla the Hun approach against staff unless we want to dumb down the replacements to the point where all they know how to say is "Yes Sir Boss".

Anonymous said...

Spearshaker: The Swedes have been very successful with such an approach as you described with adults. Kids (with some notable exceptions) are much more maleable than adults. One thing is absolutely for certain; if we just warehouse kids and make them "serve their time," we will make a negligible impact on their future lives of crime. Old Salty

Anonymous said...

Sheffield is closing, I've been saying this for months!!

Anonymous said...

Actually I think Dumphrey has a nice ring to it too.

Anonymous said...

First Sheffield will be close and next it will be Victory Field.

Anonymous said...

If Corsicana is closing they are spending alot of tax payer monies with new roofs and windows this past couple of weeks. They are still hiring people. But one never knows about this group now days.

Anonymous said...

I heard a rumor today that Judy Briscoe would consider accepting the Conservator position if it was offered. Does anyone know if this is true?
I don't know if the Legislature would considered her since she is retired TYC but I can't think of a better person for the position.

Anonymous said...

http://tycabuse.com/images/Johnson.pdf

The real reason Geo's facilty was shut down

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/tx/5356161.html

Seven inmates who were held at the Coke County Juvenile Justice Center have sued the private firm that operated the lockup

Anonymous said...

Victory Field isn't going anywhere. Talk about your own facility, but leave others alone. War mongers (rumor mills) only keep people stirred up instead of them doing their work.

When you that they have large places to send the kids other than the facilities, then you can worry.

Anonymous said...

Let's thank one of Ms. Pope's cronies for chiming in at 7:26am. Only one of her people could have blogged so eloquently.

Anonymous said...

I'm not one of Pope's cronies. I work at VFCA and am tired of the rest of the world keeping everyone stirred up.

We work hard and just about the time we can stop having nightmares and be so worried, someone posts...VFCA is closing and it all starts back up again.

Leave us alone until you have concrete evidence.

Anonymous said...

Latest Pope memo, black pants and shoes were never mandatory!!!!

Staff can now wear pants that are other than black but they would prefer that you wear black slacks??

Well I prefer certain things too that I can state or say on this blog out of respect for Scott telling us to place nice but this takes the cake.

Then yesterday in our meeting she says I never said staff had to wear black pants and shoes. I guess every damn Institution dreamed this crap up, we all woke up collectively and said "Damn-it" I think I'm gonna wear black pants with this bird shit yellow shirt!!!

When will this crap end, if your not a leader hell just pretend and nod your head every once and awhile and go huh, huh, yeah, okay, but other than that shut up.

Anonymous said...

Here is the latest job posting which should lead all to believe what direction this agency is heading to:
This is posted on the TYC employment website and is listed as Use of Force Monitor.

The Use of Force Monitor performs complex (journey-level) consultative services and technical assistance work which involves planning, developing, implementing and monitoring the TYC Use of Force program; providing consultative services and technical assistance to TYC staff, state governmental agencies, community organizations, and the public. The Use of Force Monitor will supervise and train staff. The Use of Force Monitor works under general supervision with moderate latitude for the use of initiative and independent judgment. The Use of Force Monitor will be required to travel statewide 25% of the time, work overtime and may be on-call.

Anonymous said...

Old Salty: it has been shown to work almost anyplace that doesn't consider punishment to be an end in itself. In Denmark, there is (or at least was) a co-ed prison with 1500-1700 inmates that is effectively run with 4 staff and electronic observation and access control... if they have serious problems, they call the cops. In Provo Utah, there was a facilty for first time incarcerated youth that ARBITRARILY rewarded or punished violaters of rules: outcome?, they started controlling their own behavior to avoid the unexpected. And 9:04, one of the biggest surprises after being in TYC for over 20 years is how often punk kids grow up to be adults who are not punks. Those of us who have been there, done that accept your statements about pepper spray; what we find unacceptable and vicious, brutal etc, is using it when you don't need it. You cite the (appropriate) example of "if they act up and may turn violent, use it". The "new" policy as promulgated, does not restrict the use to violence or legitimate threat of violence. According to the information in the system, the Humpster went to Al Price facility when it was essentially out of control, soon after he came on board. He is reported to have stated that he has never been spoken to that way in his life (kids cursing him out); that was the basis for the increased use of pepper spray, not violence or real danger. Under that construct, if I had been a student during d'Pope's visit to WTSS, her calling me "honey child" would have warranted my spraying her for the use of a demeaning ethnic slur that reeked of Uncle Tomism (Aunt Jemima?). Sorry about being "anon", but paybacks are the norm in the agency and can still be a bitch.

Anonymous said...

12/06 @ 9:26
I was told they have someone in mind for the Use of Force Monitor - an expert. Can't wait...

Anonymous said...

9:34 - Your first sentence holds the key. I find it very interesting and encouraging that comments such as yours are coming mostly from staff who have over 15 years with the agency. OS

Anonymous said...

TYC has created so many new positions in the agency without getting rid of the old ones. All of these positions have been on the admin side. No front line staff. We are going to spend more money to have a "regional" supervisor supervise the direct supervisor and then relay their findings to Central Office. How is this helping the front line or youth population? These positions are also being filled by incompetent staff who previously held the position they will now supervise. Makes absolutely no sense. "Regional" Business Manager, "Regional" Purchaser, "Regional" Maintenance Supervisor, "Regional" Network Specialist, "Regional" Human Resources. None of the local positions were eliminated, just demoted in most cases. How is this using the taxpayer's money wisely?

Anonymous said...

According to sources at Ron Jackson, a meeting was held by the Superintendent to keep administrative staff abrest of the coming "philisophical" changes slated for TYC. Here are a few of them for your consideration:

1. Case managers will be moved under the supervision of the Psychology Department.

2. JCO's will be relegated to simply "guarding" the youth. No more involvement in treatment.

3. Youth will stay in TYC only for the time they are adjudicated. Once that time is compoleted, they will be released, rehabilitated or not.

4. More facilities will be closed to reduce the population to "acceptable" levels.

Sounds like our friends for TDCJ are committed to destroying any chance of helping the troubled youth of Texas. If one looked objectively at TDCJ, with its corruption and staff shortages (nearly 4000), it should be clear that these bozos can't manage their own program, let alone TYC. Where will it all end?

Anonymous said...

I know D.P. and the other TDCJ implants struggle with comprehending the whole juvenile law/family code thing but did anyone bother to enlighten her that unless the youth is on a determinate sentence the judge does not court order the length of stay in TYC?

Anonymous said...

Dear Santa,

Although it's been a very difficult, I've been a pretty good agency this year.

Can you please, please, please bring me a few things? Santa, I'd really love a few months of stability. I'd love strong leadership with high morals and a commitment to doing the right thing, not the politically expedient thing, not the "boost-your-own-ego" thing, but the right thing. I really need someone with a commitment to the staff and to the students of TYC and an acknowledgment that the former TYC didn't suck at absolutely everything. Santa, I haven't asked for much in the past, but if you could please, please, please bring us a competent and present conservator who has the ability and dispensation to change this agency for the better, I'd really appreciate it.

Do you really exist, Santa?

Love,
Virginia

Anonymous said...

I see TYC as typical of the many underfunded, poorly managed and staffed public programs that has brought Texas a near to the bottom reputation in public programming. Their educational, child protective services, public health, mental health, prisons, and other public programs are the pits. It is only when these programs reach the point where they draw attention from the media that something is done about them. That is what happened to bring about the original reforms at TYC, and is continuing. TYC has on-going serious problems in the violation of court orders restricting its use of pepper spray, staff attrition, failure to attrack on hold teachers, psychologists and other professional staff, poor educational and other rehabilitation programs, etc. Changes and new leadership are obviously needed, but so many have to suffer needlessly to bring this about. It would be nice for a change if public officials took responsibility of making needed changes without being kicked in the pants and fired.

Anonymous said...

12/05. 9:42 pm - Just for the record, I'm not afraid of anyone. It has more to do with the fact that I'm too old to be afraid than with bravery. I learned a long time ago that doing what is right is not always easy and sometimes there are terrible price to be paid for doing so. But when I shave every morning, I can live with the old guy who's staring back at me in the mirror. When it comes to the safety and well-being of the kids and the staff, there is no compromise.

Billy R. Hollis

Anonymous said...

Yep, just like I said. Always devolves into a discussion about employment conditions.

You folks are reinforcing my beliefs that the only things you really care about are your pay and conditions.

Always good to have my suspicions validated.

Anonymous said...

and who cares what you believe? If one makes a statement like you, he just proves to the rest that he does not understand what he reads.
Anyone knows that the enviroment one is in is the first item to repair and then you can move forward.

Anonymous said...

About to come out soon:
all JCO will come to work 15 minutes early (before shift) for staging and dorm assignments. You will not be assigned to a dorm.

All PS II will be riff'd or down graded after the Dorm Life PS II is filled and the DOS is filled.

Gateway timekeeping system is soon to be gone. We will go back to paper time sheets because our TDCJ co-horts find computers too complicated.

We will have seven staffing patterns and if your a JCO you will receive one weekend off a month unless to get time off (we still have many vacancies).

Stay tuned!!!!!

Anonymous said...

A lawyer throwing stones at TYC staff for being too self-absorbed. Is this the twilight zone? Everyone knows that the best legal defense comes from the most expensive lawyer. You get what you pay for. Anyone remotely concerned about the kids at TYC would know if you don't take care of the staff issues, the kids are screwed.

Anonymous said...

It is tempting to just dismiss this "lawyer" as just a troll, but unfortunately, I think he well represents the problem TYC faces: like most voters, he is ignorant, vindictive towards those who commit crimes and dismissive of state employees. He cares not a jot about the kids, or the employees, or about rehabilitation. To him, like to most voters, criminals are criminals regardless of age - they deserve to be locked up for a time to "pay their debt," and when they have "served their time" they should be turned loose. Why waste our hard-earned money on rehabilitation? In the minds of people like him, people who work for TYC are just like all state employees: lazy incompetents who couldn't get a real job, so they ened up on the state payroll dole, whining about how hard they work.

As much as it galls me to realize this, that seems to be the general perception of average voter electing people to office. People like Whitmire play well with that type of audience.

You know what, though? We can make a difference. We need to do a better job of getting the word out. With voter turnouts typically abysmally low, if we turn out the vote: ourselves, our friends, neighbors, church members, etc., we might stand a chance of voting out some of these troglodytes. Just be aware of folks like our "Lawyer" friend here, who may well be a close associate of Elmer. In fact, he may be Elmer! Old Salty

Anonymous said...

Poor Poor TYC.Nobody cares about me or my kids.Stop the crying.Damm you people make me sick.And yes I do vote and it counts.

Anonymous said...

and who cares what you believe?

You do, if you want a change to be made. I pay your salary and vote. Make me care, and maybe I'll think things need to be changed.


A lawyer throwing stones at TYC staff for being too self-absorbed.

Nothing like atacking the messenger to weaken your case.

Everyone knows that the best legal defense comes from the most expensive lawyer.

Or maybe being innocent? Any lawyer can win on the facts. It takes a great lawyer to win on a technicality.

You get what you pay for.

I guess another way of phrasing this is that you earn what you're worth. Either way, you're over paid.

Anyone remotely concerned about the kids at TYC would know if you don't take care of the staff issues, the kids are screwed.

Perfect. Not only are your conditions paramount to you (my point), but your argument is that you come first?

What an ass.

Anonymous said...

What an ass. You described yourself for us. Thank you.
If you were truely so educated to be a lawyer one with so much knowlege you would not say the things you say. You are just on this website to belittle our statements and get us to respond back to your negative conversation.
I certanily hope you are lying about your profession as I do believe you are. Even the bottom of the barrel lawyers would have better things to do than monitor this website. Then again you may be a lawyer without a job or any clients to rescue because you are not worth a damn at it.
You can respond to this but it will be for others to read as I will not entertain your ignorance by reading you BullS,,,.

Anonymous said...

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/08/opinion/08sat3.html?ref=opinion

Harsh Treatment for Youthful Offenders

Rage Judicata said...

Even the bottom of the barrel lawyers would have better things to do than monitor this website.

This is more of an insult to Scott than me. I happen to think there are several good topics for lawyers of all fields. I'm negative in some threads, positive in others.

I save complaints about my working conditions and salary for places where it matters, like our firm's HR folks and partners. I'm here for information, not to bitch day in and day out about what I'm paid.

For those wanting me to get a nickname, you got it.

Anonymous said...

Grits has no job does that mean he not wroth a damm.Look at all you people that monitor this web site,bottom of the barrel TYC employees.

Anonymous said...

Just face the facts TYC is going to change if you like it are not.

Anonymous said...

“JCO's will be relegated to simply "guarding" the youth. No more involvement in treatment.”

“all JCO will come to work 15 minutes early (before shift) for staging and dorm assignments. You will not be assigned to a dorm.”

If these are true, especially the first one, then it is perhaps the best proof yet that current TYC leadership under Ms. Pope has absolutely no understand how to rehabilitate juveniles.

The adult caretakers and role models who spend 24 hours a day with a youth (the JCOs in TYC) are absolutely essential elements of any rehabilitation program. They are the ones there in the “teachable moment” when a youth is trying to decide about hitting someone (or injuring himself) out of frustration or when the youth opens a disturbing letter from home (or perhaps once again doesn’t get a letter). The JCO is also the adult that a youth most often gets to observe handling difficult situations – hopefully with patience, compassion and good judgment.

Furthermore, it is well known that ‘guards’ rarely maintain a neutral stance. Let’s not forget the famous Stanford University Prison studies where about 1/3 of normal undergraduate students pretending to be ‘guards’ demonstrated frighteningly sadistic tendencies when placed in a position of power over other students pretending to be ‘inmates.’ One way to mitigate this tendency is to give those who serve the role of ‘guard’ a structured and meaningful role in the positive treatment and rehabilitation of the inmates. Those who provide primary supervision to youth will make a difference in the culture and the success of any correctional program, one way or the other. To ignore this is worse than ignorant, it is dangerous.

Last, but far from least, how many of the long-term, dedicated JCO staff in TYC joined up to ‘guard’ kids? The good ones got involved and stayed involved because they cared about the kids, wanted to make a difference and felt that they were making a difference. How many will stay if they are confined to ‘guarding’ and their critical role as an agent of positive change is ignored? What kind of new recruits will be attracted to this position?

I included the second quote because it seems to reinforce the first one. Staffing by facility rather than dorms is certainly the easy way out. However, it completely disregards the importance of staff-youth relationships and the benefit of staff knowing something about the youth they are working with (and even their coworkers) so they can anticipate reactions and problems before they escalate.

Current TYC leadership seems to have no awareness or appreciation of juvenile corrections best practices developing around the country. They continue to move TYC further and further into the dark ages. People keep asking when the leadership of Texas is going to step-in and take control of this sinking ship. I’m not sure they have the will or the expertise to do so. It may take federal intervention to finally turn this around. From what I hear, staff ratios and turnover have not improved, there are continuing efforts to increased reliance on pepper-spray and little or no treatment program (or now perhaps one that is not going to meaningfully include the JCO staff that account for 90+% of TYC interactions with a youth).

I was at Evins Regional Juvenile Center last August when the DOJ came to visit. Current TYC leadership may not utilize or listen to JC experts but I can assure that DOJ does and their experts will not be impressed with the current direction of TYC.

>Don Brantley

Anonymous said...

Don, this is true and you know me very well even though I will not place my name on this site, still need employment. We will also start this next week allowing a 5 or 6 carry OC on their dorms at all times. We are going full bore corrections one step at a time. Just keep watching. My theory is comes back to the appropriation of the three new prisons TDCJ was allowed to get. They need more inmates, what better way to fill these beds than by not treating youth and ensuring they move to the next level? The sad thing thing about all of this is that our elected officials are behind this.

Rage Judicata said...

6:50:

You know, I thought I was cynical.

I don't believe that people care enough about reducing recidivism. But you you claimed there is just plain crazy.

Anonymous said...

Don - be assured these advocacy groups are getting more involved with every CrAzY decesion these people make.

It's getting tragic and we are most assured to be right back in Federal Court again. The feds are watching these developments, and it'll be some kids last name v. Pope that'll fix it. That's just the reality.

Anonymous said...

6:50 - Their actions may have the effect you describe, but you give them more credit for planning, coordinating and actually knowing what they are doing than I am able to. I think arrogance and incompetence are the simpler explanations...

>Don Brantley

Anonymous said...

The NYT editorial linked above should be read by everyone in the lege and in the TYC administration.

In a nutshell, it urges the federal DOJ to consider suing TYC for endangering the constitutional rights of juveniles.

Now, I know many of you could care less what the NYT writes. A bunch of Northern elitists. Whatever.

Here's the reality: this is precisely what happened in the 1970s, and I believe it will happen again if things don't change, regardless of what the NYT says.

Even though the DOJ right now is rife with corruption and more concerned with nailing Barry Bonds than enforcing the Constitution, one would expect this to change come January 2009 - esp if the new Presidential administration is Democratic.

Does the Texas legislature really want to wait for that?

Bill B.

Anonymous said...

Once again, (or twice again?) Don Brantley is right. But, I think the real problem is that the people of Texas do not believe in rehabilitation of juveniles and do not want to pay for it. Our "Lawyer" friend demonstrates that quite clearly.

It is a given that Pope and crew are ignorant, self-absorbed and arrogant - Don knows the DSM - narcisists, perhaps? But, they are doing the bidding of Whitmire, who has made a very successful career out of denigrating the work of state employees. TYC is not the first state agency he has "reformed." There'll be another one in the next biennium.

This "lawyer" is sounding more and more like Elmer. Maybe he is Elmer - he sure sounds arrogant enough! Old Salty

Anonymous said...

On the TYC website they have announced the new ConNEXTion rehab plan for TYC. This new program will replace Resocialization. Best I can tell is that no matter what a kid does he can not be demoted or loose a phase and he does not have to work this program to be released. Don, are you familar with this one? Sounds like kids are going to just do the time and get out. Can't wait to see the behaviors this is going to bring to TYC, maybe that is why they want pepper spray so bad. Ha. I may not be reading it correctly and I hope I am not.

Anonymous said...

Come to think about it,Last time I looked at my paycheck the people who work at TYC pay taxes, too. So I would figure if he pays our salary then so do we. So that does not make him any different from all of us in that respect. We are also Tax payers and voters in this state of Texas. He is not the sole provider of the funds that pays state employees pay.
Just another dumb statement that is validating our point. Troll is all it is.

Anonymous said...

Don & Bill: Do you all really think the people in the driver's seat at TYC are worried about being taken to court?

How many years did it take for two major cases involving TYC/TDC/TDCJ to be completed?

My point: The people in charge will be retired long before anything shakes out in the court proceedings.

Question#2: What is a JCO? I thought a JCO was a Juvenile Correctional Officer. Obviously that is not the case. They are not in the Peace Officer/Correctional Officer Supplemental Retirement Plan. Their training is minimal (at the very least).

Question#3: Why compare other states juvenile justice incarceration models as practical implementation for TYC? One state requires a minimum of 640 clock hours at the academy prior to becoming a "probationary" officer on a unit. The other state program that is mentioned (MO), cannot be implemented in a large juvenile incarcerated population(Staffing shortages). This could happen in a dream world (where ever that world may be).

Welcome to the real world.

Retired 2004

Rage Judicata said...

He is not the sole provider of the funds that pays state employees pay.

I never claimed to be. But there are a lot more who pay taxes and vote that are outside the TYC than there are inside.

More every day, it would seem.

Some here seem genuinely interested in the kids, and I applaud that. BB is certainly one the most obvious of that group here.

The ones that keep trolling me and calling me a "lawyer" and better yet, thinking I'm actually a plant, are only hurting the cause of folks like BB. You are obviously concerned only with your own situation, since you've already argued that they should first fix your pay, then deal with the kids' situation. Your argument goes beyond "you get what you pay for." Indeed, you seem to not care what is spent on the kids at all, as long as you get what you think you're entitled to.

Your vitriol and paranoia are amusing. As bad as you're hurting the cause by acting like a child and spouting names and making goofy arguments, I'm sure folks like BB want you to be quiet as badly as I do.

Tell us how you'd fix the problem, without name calling and paranoia if you can. Bonus points if you can do it without asking for a raise.

Anonymous said...

Human nature is a history of people worrying about themselves. There is nothing wrong with TYC employees worrying about their job conditions.

To the alleged lawyer, just what law school did you attend? I want to make sure that my children never attend it since it seems to lack much in education.

Howard A. Hickman

Rage Judicata said...

Howard, based on your admitted failures in being able to make a difference within your profession, it sounds like I make more of a difference in the world in my line of work that you do in yours.

Perhaps you should be as poorly educated as me.

As always, I'm open to information on how you would fix the problem.

I'll even keep the discussion professional, as I tried to do from the start. Let's see if you can do the same.

Anonymous said...

I do believe he was the one that said "what an Ass" to someone who posted a comment. Now he is saying stop the name calling. Hhahahaha.

I read where he did say "he paid our salary".

Unless I missed it, has anyone commented on money or pay on this post?

Is he not putting down Howard? But then talking about us using negative arguments? He is good at turning his problems around on other people. I will give him credit for blaming others for his downfalls.

If you do not work for TYC in the daily conditions that we endure then you have no idea of the problems and therefore do not have the right to tell these people how stupid or whinny they are. Walk in their shoes then make your statements.

Anonymous said...

I really do wish the various pissing matches taking place here would cease. Rage judicata's original point about the public's view, echoed by Salty, is sadly right on target... although I'd add a healthy dose of general apathy to the equation.

Retired, I respect your views, but disagree with yours and others' admonishments about "the real world". I brought up historical facts that are very much "real." Furthermore, this may sound naive, but I happen to think anything can be accomplished in the real world by people of good will and tenacity.

We've been over this question many times about whether a Missouri-style system can work in Texas. Nobody is saying that another state's system should be cut and pasted wholesale. But is the reverse true, that nothing can be done but to build more "youth prisons", jack up pepper spray use, deskill the staff into mere prison guards, and basically just give up?

If so, then TYC really should be shut down, and the facilities put under TDCJ. Why pretend?

Oh, BTW, in "the real world" of the 1970s, administrators and staff cared quite a bit when the feds got involved. They suffered very real consequences, including lost jobs, and ruined careers and reputations.

I agree completely that the current crop doesn't care one bit about this possibility. Neither do their political enablers, who ought to be embarrassed at their growing complicity in this situation. For that matter, neither did their predecessors, until the legal bill suddenly came due.

Bill B.

rage judicata said...

Again, well said Bill.

As for the other post, I said I tried to keep it professional. Admittedly, I sank to your (7:41 and 11:33) level in calling you an ass.

And again, you didn't take the chance to prove to me that you have substantive suggestions. You didn't ask for a raise, which is appreciated, but you didn't add to your cause either.

Anonymous said...

Rage Judicata,

Since I have made no admissions of "failures" in my profession, they must only be in your mind, which confirms what I though, you are an imposter. There is only one person on this blog who claimed such. I again call on you to name them. Put up or shut up. You have been caught. It is easy to hide behind a pseudonym but I remain...

Howard A. Hickman

Anonymous said...

Once again if we all will stop responding to this person we will not be having pissing contest with him. I am sure he will worm his way back in somewhere. Our blog is not about backstabbing, bashing, creating a pissing contests.Only when you respond to these comments is where you let someone win at the game they try to play. It is no fun to play alone.

Anonymous said...

TYC has announced on its website that the new treatment will be the ConNEXTions starting early 2008. How will this program work for us? Does anyone have any insite to this plan?

Anonymous said...

Well, I guess you'll have to get used to hearing Victory Field is going to close. Maybe this will help you when you finally get the word to pull your head out of the sand or whichever other dark place you have it. It's down the toilet and it's only a matter of time. You have had a target on your back for a long time and the sights are starting to get steady. Haven't you wondered why your own Supt. Brooks is constantly changing back and forth on issues? He used to be fighting some for you but now he's part of the plan. He's going to keep doing stupid things that are going to help them close you and then he's going to get that little job they've promised him to help (maybe). I can't believe he's stupid enough to trust them. His butt will be out on the streets too when it's all over. And someone needs to tell that good for nothing Principal that you have to quit having everyone do his job and do it himself. We know some are enjoying getting to act like they have some authority but that is going to be short lived. At least it's the right time of the year for Kenny!!!!! Now if you can just get him to put on his Santa suit instead of that BDU tent he wears, he'll look much more like he should. Haven't you all seen how he takes care of his little buddies and the rest of you he won't even give the time of the day??? You'd better start kissing that big butt of his real soon or it'll be too late. I can't believe he got hired. Everyone knew he wasn't worth a crap at VISD and then they hire him down the road. With leaders like him and Brooks you guys don't have a chance. They've both sold you out. Give it up...

Anonymous said...

Y'all need to quit bashing Senator Whitmire. He is a fine, upstanding gentleman who has successfully manuevered that sorry Goodhair into a corner. Goodhair is terrified of offending Senator Whitmire. If this nation is fortunate, Rudy G. will realize what a liability having a weak sister like Goodhair on his ticket will be.

rage judicata said...

Name why?

Been caught?

You make less and less sense.

rage judicata said...

(That should read "Name who?")

Anonymous said...

rage judicata,

You have reverted to form with your usual non-responsive drivel. You just gave confirmation of who you are. Once again I shall respond to you no more.

Howard A. Hickman

Anonymous said...

TYC releases new treatment program below.
(The biggest component is that it rewards behavior and youth will leave regardless of their behavior. The only way a youth will stay longer will be based upon an act of violence that gets prosecuted. Have you ever been waiting in line at a store with a parent behind you and their child asks for a candy bar and the parent says no you don't need it. The child then yells and screams as loud as they can until the parent gives in and buys the candy bar, it's called pacification. I am not stating youth should not receive rewards for their behavior but you do not build a treatment program solely based upon this model. The JCO staff will leave in droves or resort to random not stop OC spraying).

In the CoNEXTions model, reward and privileges are key motivating tools to encourage youth to progress in their rehabilitation. While all youth receive basic privileges as outlined in TYC policies, there are four additional privilege levels. As youth advance in their treatment, additional privileges are earned. Youth may earn or lose privilege levels based upon individual behavior but any lose of privilege will not affect a youth’s minimum length of stay in TYC.

Anonymous said...

I agree we disagree Bill. I was around in the 70's aand my memory of just how much the staff was "hurt" is not reflective of your comments.

I agree that we need to start somewhere and any model would be better than what there is (or is not) presently.

Your last paragraph is right on.
IMO you are a " The glass is half full", and I am "The glass is half empty".

Retired 2004

Rage Judicata said...

Once again I shall respond to you no more.


Ahh. An early Christmas for me then. Not that you had anything substantive to say anyway.

Anonymous said...

5:45 Thank you for responding. I have more questions.

Will there be a need for Pat Teams with this new program?

If a student decides to do nothing and not follow any rules, does not care about rewards then how will TYC deal with that? I see nightmare in the behavior dept.

How will education fit into this program as far as behavior in school and GED and Tabe testing if a kid refuses?

Sure hope there is a plan here.

Anonymous said...

Rage Judicata

You are metaphorically the pot calling the kettle black.

Anonymous said...

Rage Judicata sounds like he'd fit right in with the new wave of worthless know no juvenile law lawyers in TYC.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of lawyers, how is Wade Phillips doing as head of Juvenile Corrections.

Not speaking of lawyers, I wonder how Hurley feels now he has to defend the stupid things Pope has done and not just blame the past administation for everything.

Anonymous said...

Retired,

Thanks for your reply. I guess I was thinking of the TYC board, the executive leadership, and the institution superintendents.

My view swings back and forth, honestly, between the half full and half empty glass... and I'm an outsider.

BB

Anonymous said...

Rage Judicata is feeling his oats because his hero, Elmer, has won. Elmer will win in a landslide and the Guv will slink off into obscurity. Not to worry too much about the Guv, though, his pockets have been well-lined by the lobbyists. Even Madden is not going to run up against Elmer. Too bad, really, because Madden is one of the few good guys; but he is a good enough politician to pick his battles.