Thursday, January 15, 2009

Layoffs at TYC

Texas Youth Commission Executive Commissioner Cherie Townsend sent out this email today to TYC employees announcing significant layoffs:

I am certain most of you are aware that the Sunset Advisory Commission met yesterday and voted 6-5 to abolish the Texas Youth Commission and the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission and to establish the Texas Juvenile Justice Department by September 1, 2010. It was clear during the discussion that everyone is most concerned with doing the right thing for youth and for our communities. There are differences of opinion on how that might best be accomplished. It’s important to keep in mind that this is merely a first step in a lengthy process that will continue throughout the legislative session and there could be any number of outcomes that result from this recommendation. While we will continue to observe the legislative process, remember that our jobs have not changed. Each day, we need to commit ourselves to providing the best service to our youth, our coworkers, and the State of Texas. As an agency on the path of reform, your competence, dedication and exemplary service is more critical than ever.

Today, I am releasing the second phase of our agency right-sizing efforts. As we have been discussing, it is necessary to adjust our workforce to reflect the agency's reduced youth population and our current appropriations. It is important to note that throughout our right-sizing efforts, we have maintained our commitment to best practice workloads and staffing ratios for juvenile justice and specialized treatment in our staffing plan. JCO staffing/supervision ratios of 1:12, case manager ratios of 1:16 and 1:8 (specialized), and teacher ratios of 1:10 (average) are maintained as we right-size our workforce. And, we have been very careful to ensure that we are maintaining appropriate teacher certifications within our educational programs.

We will be eliminating approximately 430 positions throughout our institutions, effective March 1, 2009. While a number of those positions are currently unfilled, 100 employees will be losing their jobs. By the time you receive this email, most of those who are affected by this latest Reduction in Force (RIF) will have been notified.

I am committed to doing everything possible to assist those affected by this layoff. Human Resources will conduct one-on-one sessions with each affected employee to provide them with specific information about opportunities for transfer to other TYC facilities. Those affected will be given priority consideration to fill vacancies for which they are qualified. Those who would like to transfer to a vacancy at another facility will be reimbursed up to $500 for moving expenses.

While this is a difficult time, this reorganization and downsizing is necessary to accommodate our current youth population and budgetary constraints. There will be one additional step in our right-sizing efforts that will contain a final round of staff reductions, as well as possible facility closures. I expect to announce these actions within a few weeks.

We are all sorry to be losing friends and coworkers whose service and dedication has helped our reform efforts. However, while this time of transition is sometimes painful, it is not endless. Please continue to do your best work and I promise to keep you informed on events affecting our agency.

Sincerely,

Cherie

I'm enabling comments on this post, for now, but please stay on topic and play nice.

106 comments:

Anonymous said...

So, by the sounds of Cherie's email, teachers may take the most hits in this first round of layoffs. This certainly is not the area that needs layoffs. The layoffs should come out of Central Office. There are at least 100 useless positions in Central Office, the Annex, and the Regional Offices that need to be eliminated. Tell me if you disagree. If there are educators that are not properly certified, they should have never been hired by TYC. Several years ago, a friend of mine was not hired because they were certified in elementary education instead of secondary education, even after the person agreed in writing to get the secondary certification within one year. So, if there are educators in the field that are not qualified, sounds like once again Central Office employees failed to uphold policy. When will the brass be held accountable?

JTP said...

Well, I appreciate Townsend staying professional and on task, even though the task is daunting, especially under the current circumstances. The party isn't over though, despite the Sunset Commission's split and very close vote. The legislature, faced with some difficult fiscal decisions, will have to decide what direction to take. It may decide to go ahead and start the reorganization, however nothing much will happen until the counties are given some idea of what they are going to be getting dollar wise to shift some of the Juvenile functions to them in order to achieve the goals of regionalization and increased programatics. The legislature also might delay any changes for financial and political reasons. The States are hoping for a federal infusion of bailout money, that might make a big difference in what the legislature decides to do. In the meantime, TJPC and TYC still have Youth to service. In the meantime, SB 103 will have to be re-worked to accomodate any elimination of TYC. This is a long term proposition that will probably take at least one if not two years to evolve. What TYC has to hope for is that there won't be any new negative media fiascos that sway legislators into believing what Senator Islett stated about the failure of TYC. It would be nice if Msrs. Savoy and Hurley did a media blitz on all the positive things that are working within TYC, similar to the article that appeared in ESPN about the Gainesville football sqad. It's now or never. Toot your horn, before they reposess it!! As far as lay-offs go, Townsend is at least making every effort to get the employees who are RIF'd into some kind of paying position. The lady has brains and a heart to boot!

Anonymous said...

Sounds to me that the very last round of layoffs may include Cherie. I can't believe they are not giving her an opportunity to turn TYC around. I suspect she will have a significant role in the Texas Juvenile Justice Department.

Anonymous said...

wow this is some bad stuff...I'm wondering if anythig will happen to the supervisors on all the campuses?

Anonymous said...

Cherie is conduting herself professionally as this is a hard task for anyone. It seems to me that when deciding who to layoff they went strictly by time in service, that means that we lost some staff that were motivated, educated and ready to roll - my fear is that somehow facilities will be left with staff that have been with TYC for a long time but seem to be retired on the job. I feel they should have went by some kind of matrix and rate them according to education, attendance and evaluations. This is an occupational hazard in which the staff that rose to the top were let go and we may be left with "sedimentary" staff to deal with these youth. It may handicap us in the long run, we will have to wait and see. Good Luck to all that were affected - God Speed

Anonymous said...

Hello,First of all im from Victory Field and I am seeing the "right sizing" cuts first hand. 27 people in Victory Field in one day wow,and some of them look to be a personal house cleaning by management.I see what is obviously a lets get rid of him now while we can attitude, although its for the best i think they will be prepared more than those who refuse to believe the doors are closing at Vernon.I must say as for Victory Field there's more to come!

"So long and thanks for all the fish!"-Douglas Adams.

Anonymous said...

wep...GOD SPEED TO ALL PEOPLE IN THE AGENCY...WE ARE PRAYING FOR ALL OF YOU...BE SAFE AND STAY ON TOP UNTIL THE END...WE HAD 12 AT OUR STATE SCHOOL..AND WOW DID IT HIT US HARD...

Anonymous said...

How many and what positions were eliminated at Ron Jackson I and II?

Anonymous said...

Did we not read where the Sunset wanted to improve education and put more money into education for the students? If that is true then why are we cutting positions in Education depts in TYC? Teacher aide positions were hit hard also. Does this make sense when you speak of reducing class sizes and more one on one help for students?

On the certification issues, it was not that they hired people who were not qualified, it is that the rules changed in the middle of the stream when someone got a bright idea. At CRTC you were qualified if you were Special Ed Certified only because 90% of the students there are Spec ed students who require a Special education certified teacher. You could not be hired if you did not have this certification. As the rules changed with all schools and the highly qualified came into play in the past year or so.
If you had only a special ed certification you could still under TEA be qualified to teach other subject areas if you were Highly Qualified in that area. Same as public schools now. Today again TYC changed the rules and laid off these teachers.
We are an agency that works by the minute, one minute its ok and the next minute its not. They are working themselves into the future that no qualified teacher will want to work for TYC because they can't trust that the job will be a secure job. Sad day for lots in TYC who were good teachers and worked hard to see that the students learned, no matter what others may believe.

Anonymous said...

These layoffs were necessary based upon the down sizing of the agency. But we are still in debt based upon having two facilities open that were slated for closure last year. The right sizing is not over and during or after this session TYC will have to close one if not two facilities. And if it goes anything like today those staff currently located at these two facilities should start looking now, there will be no warning, I am out looking tomorrow, wish I had more notice!

Anonymous said...

Well, I guess we all were just waiting. How did this effect West Texas so far? Good luck to all involved.

Anonymous said...

Was it pretty much new staff that got the notices?

Anonymous said...

I would not say "new" but those who had the least time in their respective positions.

I would ask if we are truly "streamlining" why do we need a purchaser and a regional purchaser at the same facility? why do we need a business manager and a regional business manager at the same facility? Would it not make sense if we are talking dollars to get rid of dual positions?

Why aren't the facility superintendents helping in breaking the news - these people were just handed a folder with a RIF letter in it and told "c-cya" at least a handshake and a "good job" or "I wish it did not have to be this way" would be in order - this is a cold agency right now man!!

Anonymous said...

8:05, you said it. And one cold lady is driving the train. Can't believe most of ya'll are singing her praises. Central Office should have absorbed the cuts. There are too many Chiefs and not enough warriors. They never should have cut the field staff. Cherie is taking care of herself and her people, just like a good political implant. Bad decisions breed worse ones in TYC.

Anonymous said...

Too bad, but there are always some with their noses in the right place, to insure their own survivability. Look at who is still with TYC. Look at who got the kick out boot. Its not just TYC, most agencies do the same...you look out for me and I look out for you; performance is far down the line for self survival. A villian to those chopped, but a hero to those saved.

Anonymous said...

WOW!!!!
I know it is a harsh opinion, but hopefully this layoff will include Cheri and those at the top. Cheri’s intentions are very sweet, but I disagree with the kind hearted notion to show favoritism to outgoing employees regarding filling vacancies elsewhere in the agency over those who might be more qualified, regardless of origin. Wake up! You were tasked to fix a state agency that we as Texans are paying for and have lost faith in, not a NON-PROFIT! It is this kind of LIBERAL HAND HOLDING that will likely secure her ultimate demise, and ensure that the TYC is ultimately integrated into TJPC. Buckle up comrades, 2009 is going to be a wild ride for you guys still with the agency.

Another thought:
Maybe Cheri could lobby for some bail out money, and not let any one go!
It’s time to act like a responsible CEO, and not a kindergarten teacher; get tough and fix this mess, or step down and let the state put someone in control that will!

Spent!

Anonymous said...

I hope you all realize that this is our last effort to band together and articulate our positive. As the session begin notice the advocacy groups in our corner, the lack of screaming parents so and so on. The only ones that never have anything at all good to say about TYC are us the employees. I don't know which facility 805 was at but I know adminstrators were at many of the others assisting with breaking the terrible news. This is our last chance to save ourselves, despite recent events hitting the media (events happen and you should be graded on how you respond to them) the agency is quieter and safer thanks to OIO and OIG and everyone else that busts their fanny everyday. Lets not let Mr. Henson once again have to point out to us what a sniviling bunch of complainers we are especially those who still have jobs after I no for a fact 12 year veterans received RIF's today. Ms. Townsend is twice the person Da POOP ever dreamed about being RS

Anonymous said...

Well as usual the folks in Austin are untouched. Odd that the payroll in Austin is well over what it takes to run one of the big facilities. Those people are scared to even walk thruogh a school with students during movement. These are the folks who tell us how to teach,motivate and treat our students.For the same reasons the big 3 are going belly up, way too heavy in non-producing management. Change management ,let them feel stress of doing 3 jobs,change all ways of doing business every year or so. Why not make every cubicle hider work 1 month with our students directly. Thanks for the vent.

Anonymous said...

Why does TYC Have so many Dietetions?????? They do not have that many youth to support that many High Priced Staff!!!
It looks like they should cut that department back by a whole bunch wow many public schools in Texas seemed to do quite well with a lot less dietetions!

Anonymous said...

Sorry Guys, but all of those days of stealing OT, getting paid to call in sick or just simply not doing a single thing inside the fence all day except see how hard it was to not do your work have caught up to you. This old agency is gasping for its last few bits of air and you are to blame. You old JCO IVs, reject caseworkers and lousy teachers know who you are and you guys have swamped the boat one too many times. If the good staff will band together and front you out when the time comes, maybe the phoenix that is reborn out of the ashes will not include you. One can hope. Being a hard working, tax paying Texas citizen myself, I can only say good riddance to bad rubbish. Flush that toilet already.

Anonymous said...

A good place to cut and save a lot of money is all the Regional Managers! My God we have several Regional Managers for everything. They don't even have real jobs. Exactly what do they do - nothing but walk around with the big head.

Anonymous said...

Gee, 937....you must have been a staff, to know how each day really works. Yes indeed, thousands of hours of work were pissed away and days of sick time misused, but caused by bad administrators. Its probably more in the millions of hours wasted because of abuse and misdirection. What goes around......

Anonymous said...

I for one don't see why Cherie can't see that the regional managers aren't needed. Of course the field needs oversight. That's what the other 50 million big wigs in central office are for. Put some of that manpower in the field where it's needed.

Anonymous said...

I would like to know what the positions in central office are doing that used to provide oversight. All they've done is add a couple of more layers between central office and the field. Comparing the communication that we have now to what we did have, we were perfect. There is absolutely no communication now. Sure, Ms. Townsend sends a message every now and then about big issues, but on a day to day basis, the information is not trickling down to the field.

Anonymous said...

Boy, I can see why Scott does not want TYC to comment! Just can't stop blaming other people for stuff. Stop finding fault in everyone no matter who they are!
Our sup was there, our ast.sup was there and others when we were told. Did not make it any better, but they were not cold about it. Get the facts straight.
Take all that blame and go find yourself a job if you hate it so bad. Wait til the day they place that folder in your hand and see how it will feel. You want to blame someone, blame the legislators there the ones pulling the plug!
Scott I belive ones trying to kill this TYC blog, have either been fired or never worked for TYC. This is a trying time all across the agency and is going to get worse for those of us who care. Please don't take us away, just delete the mongrels that are being stupid on this blog.
By the way, if you can't spell the position, don't talk about it.

Anonymous said...

AMEN 953, lets get down to business before all of us have a RIF letter in hand.

Anonymous said...

Too Late

Anonymous said...

resign tomorrow you are dead weight "to late". all the rest of you entitled naysayers whom want to forget why you signed up for this mission go with them. I've got over two decades in the business and am as good as anyone in the trade. I'm sticking it out.

Anonymous said...

With that much time invested, you had to have your nose up someones butt. Best hope she don't make any quick moves or you love the connection, nose and all.

Anonymous said...

9:53

"if you can't spell the position, don't talk about it"

Lesson:

belive? it's b-e-l-i-e-v-e

there? should be their as in they are

proofread your entries if you are so s-m-a-r-t

sorry grits, just had to

Anonymous said...

Unforturnately, from what we saw at our facility yetserday, tenure did not seem to have much to do with the decisions. We had people with 8-17 years experience RIF'ed while others with 3 months are still in place. While no one would wish this horrible experience on anyone, it does not appear that one can assume that tenure will keep you warm at night. I am just curious what criteria was ACTUALLY used to determine who is going and who is staying...for now anyway! Two more weeks and more cuts. Good luck to all of my dedicated co-workers. May God bless us all during these trying times!

Anonymous said...

Be careful, Scott will disable the comments. He too no longer wants to read the truth and hear the true feelings of TYC field staff.

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget that the timing was just as Sunset made the recommendations to abolish and concolidate. This may have been in the works for awhile but I see it as poor timing in an attempt to posture to keep TYC and ultimately TJPC alive.

Anonymous said...

Why is there not the availability to comment on the Sunset Recomendation post from yesterday? I think Sunset did it's job and now it neeeds to follow thru and create a new agency that will move forward. I see Cherie leading that agency.

Anonymous said...

For all of you in a protected age class whose position is filled with someone not in a protected age class should consider contacting an employment lawyet about age discrimination.

For those thinkning about resigning, don't. Let them RIF you first, especially if you are in a proteceted age class.

Anonymous said...

Famous Grits posts.........

If you want to make government smaller, you can't pretend cutting it is easy.

1/13/2009 03:30:00 PM

It's easy to say "cut staff," but it's a lot harder to do and the devil's in the details.

1/13/2009 06:07:00 AM

Grits- See, it wasn't as hard as you thought.

Anonymous said...

For all of you in a protected age class whose position is filled with someone not in a protected age class should consider contacting an employment lawyet about age discrimination.

For those thinkning about resigning, don't. Let them RIF you first, especially if you are in a proteceted age class.


This legal advice is worth less than what we paid for it.

Just as a head's up, being in a protected class doesn't mean you can never be fired. And making a discrimination out of a RIF is almost impossible.

Anonymous said...

"Me and My Brother" (a little song)

Me and my brother,
Workin' in the cleech pit.
Callused hands,
And our faces sweat.
Thinkin' of the things,
That we done on the outside.
The things that we long regret.

Yeah, suckin' on a button,
Green fatigues;
Load the dump trucks,
And not a word can you say.
Break your leg,
Strain your backbone.
You'll never get a T-bone,
Just bread and water today.

Me and my brother,
Diggin' out the White rock.
Wonder how'd we get this way.
Tryin' to do our best now,
You never get a rest now,
The Sun's sure hot today.

Wait till his heads turned,
You're blistered and you're sunburned;
Thinkin' 'bout the folks back home.
Wonder when you get there,
If you ever get there.
Will the law leave you alone.

Me and my brother,
Work along together.
Sweatin' inside our shoes.
The man says dig now,
His horse is mighty big now.
The Devils redeemin' his dues.
Yeah the Devils redeemin' his dues.

Jack a former state boy © 1968/2009 posted with out permission but with tears. 120k+ childrens lives ruined buy the people entrusted to help them. I have plenty more horror stories.

Con/Sofas
Sheldon tyc#47333

Anonymous said...

Well TYC is a place that feeds the FAMILY...So what took place yesterday is all but not good,But i tell you what they are in need of is JCO..If all fail go be a JCO and keep your money coming....POST FROM MOAU

Anonymous said...

Sheldon tyc#47333 Are you in or out of TYC?

Anonymous said...

By making these staff cuts now, does the amount of money projected to be saved by the merger get reduced?

Keeping the headquarters staff is artificially inflating the numbers to be saved. Of course, I'm not looking for political motivess in the timing of all this.

The $500 offered to relocate relocate a person that has been laid off is far less that the cost ot recruit and train a "new hire". More, much more, should be offered for relocation expenses.

Elliephant said...

I'm puzzled by all those that don't seem to remember that Central Office already went through the first phase of RIF back in the Fall. This is the second phase, and in the letter yesterday titled Hiring Freeze for Facility Vacancies she said that Central Office is still facing more RIF.
Also, I can tell you that at WTSS, at least, policy was followed as to which Case Managers were RIFed. The RIF was announced on Dec 3rd and the ratios were given, Out here, at least, the CMs looked up the policy and figured out for themselves who would be gone.
Yes, it's not fun finding a job in this economic climate, but Dec 3rd to Mar 1 is pretty darn good notice if you weren't in denial.
Even as a family member if one who recieved a RIF letter yesterday, I feel that this situation has been hamdled pretty well.

diogenes said...

The Supt. and HR director gave the notices at WTSS. The only cold thing about it was the script Central Office sent that had to be read. We had been told that Central Office would come to give the notices, but I guess that was more myth than truth. Once he finished the script, we got down to the details and time was given for each individual to ask all the questions they needed and get whatever answers were currently available.

We were given the full six weeks notice on the RiF called for in policy. We were afraid the "emergency" clause would get used an only two weeks notice given.

I haven't gathered all the numbers yet, but WTSS lost several people all around. Maintenance, laundry, and other support areas took hits as well as at least 6 Case Managers (almost half) and probably 2 JCO VIs.

The RiFs were done fairly straight by policy and almost exactly matched what we had already figured out ourselves when we first got the warning e-mail at the beginning of December. A person got so many points based on TYC service and their last performance evaluation. Licenses could also be counted in certain cases. For those who complain they didn't have enough heads up, all I can say is that, at least for the CMs, it was easy to know with a fair amount of certainty back in early December if you were in danger of the RiF if you had run the numbers the way we did at WTSS. Most of us that we estimated would be below the line started the job search at that point in order to hedge our bets.

My concern is with the new ratios. The new program we have been trained on works best with a 12:1 ratio (according to the professionals who did the training). The "rightsizing" is setting caseloads at 16:1 (8:1 for specialized treatment). We're still waiting to see if Security CMs will get counted towards that ratios or if they will be kept separate. If they are counted towards the ratios, then we'll be back to where we were a few years ago, with actual caseloads of 20+ while running a program designed for much smaller ratios. 16:1 was ideal for the old program (so we ran average caseloads of 24+), but the added requirements from SB103 and the new program make 16:1 something that can only be done if Case Managers do nothing by CM duties and discover a way stretch a day into 25 hours. I'm sure we'll figure out a way to make it happen, but in order to do so, TYC needs to break the habit of using CMs as backup JCOs and get all the programs at a facility to mesh together better instead of fighting against each other.

The teaching ratios are also a concern, especially as ISISD is upside-down in that regard at WTSS. I don't know how the new mandates will affect their contract.

Hopefully things will work out on the ratios for those who get to stay. I keep hoping that things will finally get fixed the right way this time around instead of us going back to where we were almost 4 years ago when I came aboard. After 2 years of false starts and Dimitria Pope, its hard to keep hoping.

Good luck to those who remain to continue the work, whatever the work is called next week or next month.

Anonymous said...

I hate that this happened but it was inevitable. But to those caseworkers who got rifted, it you want to stay in your area of the state, check out cps. They always have openings all over the place.

Anonymous said...

God's Blessings to the TYC employees who were aprat of this RIF. I pray that they all will be able to seek employment a State Agency so that none of them will lose their benefits and state time. Be Blessed!!!!!

Anonymous said...

And the idiots that caused all of this got away scott free with big checks for life........

diogenes said...

Hang on, Kimbrough's back on the trail to sniff out problems.

deja vu?

http://trailblazersblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2009/01/perry-kimbrough-will-investiga.html

SEND HELP TO MART 1 said...

In Mart 1 we lost all secretary posisions but one, including one secretary who would have retired in October. We lost two CMgrs. One PS from Mart 2, who had only been a PS for 4 months but had 22 yrs. TYC service. Some cuts are going to be necessary, but what we need are JCOs. I work in the security department and we routinely work 54-60 hours a week. As fast as we can hire them, we lose them. Morale is low and we are getting TIRED. It's hard to work 12 hours everyday (including before and after off days), come home, rest, and deal with children and preform other family duties. Will someone please inform Cherie that we need HELP.

Anonymous said...

Here is the story:

In an afternoon interview, Gov. Rick Perry said he has assigned Jay Kimbrough, his chief of staff, to get to the bottom of the debate over the safety and conditions of Texas' state schools for the disabled.
"You know where I go when I have a problem," Perry said of Kimbrough, who he called in to repair the sex abuse-plagued TYC in 2007. Jay "is on the trail so to speak."
Perry said he's still not convinced that a U.S. Justice Department report on civil rights violations across Texas' 12 institutions represents more than isolated incidents - but wants to be sure.
"There are some great concerns out there," he said. "There's still some investigating to do to find out whether this is a systemic problem. What I don't want to see happen is a knee-jerk reaction to an isolated situation."


What is the connection between Perry and Kimbrough. Maybe this relationship should be investigated. I mean, they seem just a little too close. Weekend motorcycle trips together, cushy jobs at Texas A&M, then the Governor's Office. What is really going on? Jay, I know you read Grits, so do tell, are you and the Governor playing hide the banana in the tailpipe?

Anonymous said...

Diogenes...you should have been first in line for the guiloitine. You have only fed into this bad situation...hope you are one of those fired! You have set back nd watched and fed on those in need. Now eat your own.

Anonymous said...

Why aren't comments posted....who filters them?

Anonymous said...

This post is extremely scanned, If you are not a favotite of Grits, he will erase you. If he .likes your post...you're OK. Is he baised? You damn righjt he he.

Anonymous said...

Glad to hear WTSS was so politically correct in giving the bad news. No need to worry, WTSS, VFCA, CRTC, and Crockett will all be closed down within one year.

Anonymous said...

Several positions have been shielded for years in TYC and now the axe has found the unneeded staff. Whoooo to those of the axe. You should have felt the coming cut, so befond you who did not, and good riddance to those who thought they were above the laws of Cherie. Hail Cherie....Osama too.

Anonymous said...

Kimbrough did nothing to repair TYC. In fact, his actions (during the brief time he was slumming with us) furthered the demise of the agency. He attempted to destroy some good people in the agency and then just moved on. He won't do anything more for the other agency in his "trail". What a joke. I pray that the taxpayers send Gov Goodhair and his cronies packing asap....

Anonymous said...

Drop a bomb on Crockett and be done with it. I hear that Gibbs has been given her walking papers. I can't believe it took over a year for someone to figure out a secretary can't be an asst. supt.

Anonymous said...

Not fair. Goodhair is good to his cronnies...you just need to get in line as a cronnie. If you are TYC...forget it. They had it and sucked the wrong way.

Anonymous said...

1:03 - Now, let's all hold hands and sing...you are in a dreamworld. Maybe some can appreciate your optimism, but wake up and see what is going on. Sitting around, hoping that things will work out will not pay your bills next year when you don't have a job.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

No comments have been deleted from this string, 8:56, but any of you who don't like this blog's hospitality know EXACTLY where you can stick your complaints.

Concerned Taxpayer said...

Only three dietitians at TYC???
Unlike school districts, TYC has total responsibility for the nutritional status of the youth.
Dietitians must identify, assess, and meet basic as well as special nutritional needs due to disease etc.They must also complete on-going quality control and quality assurance at all their facilities and Half Way Houses in order to meet accreditation standards.
Since teen years are a period of great growth where little problems can quickly become big concerns, three dietitians seem to be minimal staffing at best. In my pediatric practice, I put a dietitian and a nurse on all my teams for best cost/benefit outcomes.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Townsend visited our campus today at Ron Jackson and was more than gracious to stay and speak with those employees who lost their jobs. We did not like the answers given but in the end she was professional and straightforward. Now our Superintendent was all over himself with Ms. Townsend this and Ms. Townsend that, it was quite a show, it looked as though he was rehearsing or campaigning for the job he has now, yes we miss Ms. Stroud. But, in all honesty it was time to move on, I'm not ready to become a JCO this point in my career, take care and hope all of you find peace.

Anonymous said...

The lay offs yesterday in Mart were casworkers and a p.a. I believe. I'm not sure how they are choosing who goes first.
I know this much, it's a dirty rotten mess. Can anyone possibly imagine what the employees are going through right now? They were already being browbeaten and threatened on a daily basis, now to add insult to injury their losing their jobs anyway. I'm sorry but this will go down in history as a great folly for many, many reasons. I'm all for loyalty, but come on, whose going to ride this ship down? It is obvious to all that the powers that be are dead set on destroying TYC. The fact that there was a sunset commission in the first place was all wrong and just a dog and pony show. Any human being with an ounce of cartical activity has enough sense to know that it is to soon to determine anything about TYC. The sunset commission reported that porgrams had failed that hadn't even been implemented yet. That is 100% the truth. Now how valid is anything they have to reccommend? Most people see this and understand that the truth doesn't matter. The employees need to be looking for employment elsewhere. No one knows when their card is up next so why not go out now and use up their time before it's lost. Another problem with all of this is veteran employees being supervised by superintendents and assistant sup. who are relatively new to the agency. They have proven to be cold blooded micromanagers, that rule by imposing disciplinary actions for even the most minute error. Try as they may, it is very difficult to be loyal to those people. Being at TYC now is like having your head on the block and anticipating the blow. You know it's coming, and prolonging it is just sadistic.
The unbelievable tragedy of it, is that it was all so terribly unecessary.
I can't make any nicer than that. This is hurting the kids and the staff more than any of you care or can even possibly imagine.

Anonymous said...

The last two years have been unnecessary. Did TYC need some changes. Absolutely, but have we made any advances? Hell no. Did some folks need to go. Hell yes, but there were more just like them waiting to take their place (and in some cases, much worse). We are far worse for staff and youth than we were when this whole orchestrated mess began.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, I can't help it. They should have went by a matrix to prevent being left with sedimentary staff. I know I'm being tacky, but maybe they should have gone by a literacy matrix even if some of them were sedentary.
I don't know why TYC officials are so frozen with fear that they won't toot their own horn. There are so many wonderful stories not getting told. I asked a PA that and he told me that they are not allowed to mention anything from the past, even if it was a great idea that worked. He was serious. That doesn't explain why nothing is done out of central office unless they are somehow under the same pressure. You guys just have no idea how it really is because of the fear. It's management, the new management that's instilling all of the fear and it's just rediculous.

Anonymous said...

I am an outsider who has been observing all of this. I am not very smart and I'm certainly not important but I do have a humble opinion. Before I form an opinion I need facts, real ones. I had to do alot of digging in a many different places and I had to talk to alot of different people. I found that TYC had one major sex scandal that many staff tried to report. I found that in the early days there were many horror stories but in recent times not so. Research pretty much showed that allegations of abuse were dealt with seriously and that some were founded and many unfounded. Overall, I learned that many staff through the years lost their jobs. I found no evidence to support alleagations of sex crazed abusive staff. Bottom line, I am perplexed by all of this. I found that there were many wonderful success stories that are not being told. I just no reason to tear the agency apart. I read about a young man from Corpus Christi that ended up being recognized by the govenor of Texas and the Pres. of the U.S. Clinton, it was. I read that this young man had no family and that his former TYC staff flew, at their own expense, to support him and cheer him on. I was moved by that and many other stories.
Like I said I am nobody, but I see that TYC has been rendered impotent to do much of anything right now and I think that's a real tragedy for the staff and the kids. I compared TYC to TDCJ and what I found under TDCJ's hat is truly scandalous. I would just like to say that the staff at TYC are in my prayers. I also pray that the legislature will do the right thing and rethink all of this knee jerk over-reaction. It's always best to keep between the ditches. Staff I hope you all can start telling all of the good things you know about TYC. I don't wrk there and I told one. Tell us all some more.

Anonymous said...

Grits,
I feel certain that you've volunteered a great deal of time at TYC?????????

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Stay on topic or I shut the string down, 1:44. If you don't trust my motives, by all means - leave and don't come back.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

BTW, I'm not trying to be rude to everyone who's contributed to a very productive comment string by comparison to many recent TYC posts. I appreciate nearly everybody being positive and constructive. Thank you. You've actually renewed my confidence that allowing comments on TYC posts still retains fundamental value.

However, this session, I'm simply not going to let a handful of malcontents dominate the discussion with off-topic rants about their supervisors, co-workers, etc.. I'll eliminate TYC comment strings first. If you don't like it, start your own blog. It's not that hard, you can write what you want, and perhaps you'll even find it therapeutic. But you can't do it here.

Thx,
- The Management

retiree said...

retired from TYC. have worked in many professions and for many bosses over the last 42 years in private business and this state agency. those I worked with used to refer to TYC as the CIA/TYC because everything was so super secret. have never seen an organization with poorer communication and so reactive with such poor planning and control.

I've witnessed teachers in my building reading the newspaper between themselves and their students, daily, with their feet up on their desks. (how about banning newspapers in the school? only deliver them to the cottages.)

I know there to be some staff who routinely 'hide' out and get their students or classes covered by others. (how about having a faculty meeting stating that staff CANNOT monitor students unless designated by a supervisor?)

I see staff so intimidated they have whispered conversations, all the while watching to see who might walk up on them.

we used to have a long time teacher, now retired, who could only pass the written portion of the CPR/First Aid block training by getting answers from those sitting at the back table.

all these anecdotes, and dozens more, are part and parcel of any governmental agency.

all of these incidents could have been, can be eliminated by the control function of supervisory personnel. not vindictive 'Gotcha' supervision, but getting out of the chair, out of the office, watching, looking, and acting.

we have teachers who have NEVER delivered a 45-minute lesson cycle. never, not at TYC and with NO public school teaching experience.

we have teachers who refuse to incorporate technology into their lesson plans because 1) there are no lesson plans, and 2) the long-time teachers don't have any intention of changing without resistance.

we have teachers who refuse to modify curricula for sp ed students because they don't want to and because they don't know how.

I've been cursed at Wal-Mart while wearing my state school insignia shirt during the 2007 sex scandal news coverage.

I understand why. what I know to be accepted 'best practice' is not 'best' at all.

radical, clearing house cleansing is needed. some ex-military multi-billionaire with no fear needs to step forward and do what Perot did in the 80's with no pass-no play. remember how that worked until the football coaches lobbied to get it changed?

I've seen throwaway thugs turned around and headed in the right direction. it's the absolute best part of the job and agency.

what I wish for, is that the same turnaround strategy can be employed with salageable staff and this agency...

retiree said...

sorry...in the last line from retiree's rant, make that word 'salvageable', please and thank you.

Anonymous said...

It is a shame that the agency could not have offered early retirement in lieu of rifting current employees. Of course, I know it costs a great deal to do that, but it would have been a great solution to the right-sizing issue.

Anonymous said...

It was about this time two years ago when all hell broke loose. Let's never forget the absolute idiot executive director who left us all to hang and thus caused this mess.

In all reality, it'll take an agency like TYC five years or more to recover from its implosion. Look at who replaced the 2007 executive management team and where they are now:

Ed Owens - Retired
Demitrus Pope - Fired
Micky Neil - Fired
Bronco Billy - Fired
Mary Strong - Fired
Alfonso Royal - Fired
Latisha Martinez - Fired
Steve Foster - Resigned
Richard Nedelkoff - skipped town

Their maybe more I haven't mentioned. Now look at the top five and ask yourself, "what's the common denominator?"

Ans. TDCJ.

Now, for those of you who don't work in this agency, if you've had your long term company plan that you've been working and operating under for years ripped out from under you with nothing to replace it with, do you think your company could be successful and productive? And do you think firing your entire executive counsel at the same time (esp. those who had NOTHING to do with any scandal), and replaced with a bunch of people who had no idea what they were doing - do you think that company would have nose dived in the ground? You bet, and that's what happened here.

If we're going to get through this, then we need stability at the top, and time. Give up on Gov.Perry, not us.

Anonymous said...

On the education front of the "new TYC, connection program" I will tell you about the way that works.
We spend most class periods now, dealing with behavior. One student can disrupt the entire class for the entire class period only to go to the next class and do the same thing.
You spend valuable teaching time, doing check in's interventions and a trip to ISS that last only about 15 minutes then the kid returns to start the process all over again until the class is over.
Your told to do whole group lessons. You start and one or two kids tell you to shut the fu... up and so that lesson went south. Then sometimes a fight will break out, lesson is over for sure.
Control your room, yes, you must have control of your class, but you have no tools to control them with. Check in, time outs results in a fu.. you and your check in and your time out and your rewards.
Then your told to stop teaching content lesson's and teach social skills and your given a packet to teach from. So now everyday you teach the kid how to shake hands and greet people and how to wait to speak. This is good and it is important. But on the flip side of that coin, your told your scores are down, and your not teaching the kids content material. Well no your not, because your told to teach social skills to the class and its manadated by CO. So what do you do? During your teaching of social skills you got a few that are mad telling you that is not what they need to learn , they want to study for the GED , fu.. the social skill shi.. not doing that crap. They all laugh!
If you are really lucky in one day at teaching in TYC no one will take their private out of their pants and wave it at you.
Nothing can be done about that, it did not hurt anything. Oh you can write a useless behavior report that the kid does not give a rats a.. about.
Your day is done, you can go to your ard meetings, staff meetings and get more directives on what your to do to improve in your classroom, then home to start the process all over again for the next four days.
Yes, there are and have been some bad teachers in TYC and in Public schools and neither place will get rid of them in a timely manner. Depends on the management of both.
Has TYC improved, no, has the fear gone out of the employees by bad management and groupies protecting the others back,No.
It has changed, but not for the better and never will.

Anonymous said...

Grits I hope you might be able to understand the rage and anger felt by many long term TYC employees who got screwed because of the actions of a very few. Political operatives like Jay Kimbrough were placed over an agency they had no working knowledge of. Much of the anger felt by TYC employees was fueled by grandstanding politicians who had absolutely no understanding of juvenile justice or program needs of the youth. Many so called experts were brought in to fix TYC and their method was to destroy the agency and the good people who had spent decades trying to help change the lives of youth for the better. To this day not one of the sexual predators has gone to trial and most likely never will. None of the people who engineered the cover-up have been investigated or charged. The only people who have been punished at TYC had absolutely nothing to do with the sexual assaults or the cover-up. The lives of many good employees have been severely damaged along with well being of their family members. Yes many people who have worked at TYC and the ones currently still at TYC are mad as hell about the treatment they have received. I know Grits your focus is on the youth but if the employees get screwed then the level of care for the youth suffers in direct proportion.

Have the Experts improved TYC? Not at all! TYC is much worse off today than it was in January of 2007. TYC staff are not in control of the TYC units, the youth run the operation. Are sexual assaults still occurring in TYC? Absolutely sexual assaults are happening only now it is youth on youth since the current staff are afraid to exercise control over the youth because they know they will lose their job.

My advice to the long term TYC employees is to retire if you can or seek alternate state employment . The never ending stress of working at TYC has devastating negative consequences for you and your family. I was able to retire and feel I am so fortunate to be away from TYC. Many people I knew and worked with retired or moved to other state agencies and feel the same way I do. The ex-TYC employees I have stayed in touch with all talk of a much happier life since they have left the agency. Let the experts have TYC and move on for your own good. There is a point where your welfare and the welfare of your family take priority over all. Let the experts run TYC by themselves, they have done a stellar job of managing it so far.

Good Luck to All

Anonymous said...

10:07 to add to your good advice I would like to say this:

Has anyone who has worked or is working at TYC and seen a employee that has either retired or quit a month or so after leaving the agency in any job position noticed how different they look?
They look younger, happier, no stress in the face. It is amazing at the transformation that takes place after they leave TYC! If you know someone that has left think about it for a few minutes.
I have friends who have either retired or moved on to another job and they all say it is heaven not to have to go back to "that place" and most will say," I really miss the kids, but not all of the other bullshit that goes on" now that has alot to say about the Texas Youth Commission. Some will say I would have loved to stayed there but I just can't take all the crap I had to put up with anymore.
Sad isn't it that adults run off people who care for kids and that those adults could careless about the kids they proclaim to protect.

Anonymous said...

How can good tenured staff at West Texas be fired/riffed, when new unconcerned staff are allowed to stay? Look at RF who was riffed...makes no sense whatsoever.
Can't there be a unified lawsuit for these employees unfairly fired by Austin?

Anonymous said...

Is there a legal reason that Dwight Harris can't be called before the lege to explain why all this happened? How about his cohorts that helped with the sex scandal cover-up? Texans deserve some answers for all that has happened the past two years.

Anonymous said...

RF as in the trainer at WTSS was RF'ed?

Riffed said...

I dont believe ne one at WTSS is safe. I have a gut feeling that there are going to close us. I got riffed, and im not made about, i think im actually happy because i have an oppurtunity to move back to civilization, I just wished i could stuck around untill my daughters finishs the year out in school i finished my masters degere in may. But oh well just like i tell the youths in TYC. i got to accept and move on.

Anonymous said...

One of the worst mistakes in TYC History: declaring resocilization dead without a proven system, tested and fool proof, ready to replace it. This business of making up a new treatment program as we go set the institutions into chaos, as no one knew what was right and what was wrong, and basically, the institutions lost their confidence and then their culture, and ultimately control of their programs. We need time to work through the problem created by the ledge and an idiot former executive director with no backbone whatsoever. If I was tenured and rifted, I might see what personal damages I could get from Dwight Harris. I'd do it just to make him sweat for what he did to us. He sold us out. Now I'm seeing my co-workers of many years having to endure this mess.

Riffed said...

The funny thing about this is that Ms Townsend decieded to rif people in TYC, Carma might come back and bite her in the but and she might get riffed her self if they abolish TYC and TJPC.

Anonymous said...

Who else was canned at West Texas besides Foster? He was a good staff, it doesn't make much sense.

Riffed said...

I never herd foster was riffed all i know there was 6 case manger, 1 laundry person a couple of maintence people.

Anonymous said...

You know I wonder if the tenured staff that got rifted were meeting the rule of 80 to retire and hadn't done so? That would almost seem like age discrimination but it wouldn't surprise me.

Anonymous said...

Can all the TYC employees get together and file a sexual harrasment case against the govenor for creating a hostile workforce environment? Would love to. I transferred out 4 months ago to another state agency to prevent a nervous breakdown over all the unknowing and bleak future.

Anonymous said...

Concur with the ones who seen teachers playing games; allowing crosswords in class; allowing youth to run the class; not knowing how to teach; always absent from class; TYC has the worse teachers in the world..."teachers"...a misuse of the word. TYC youth have been misguided for years by these worthless teachers. Perhaps three of the dozens I have known were worth a dime. Thanks for nothing.

Anonymous said...

9:20 you seem to be disgruntle against teachers in TYC. That is ok to have your own thoughts. But we have been asked to not run others down on this website. Please try to be more civil so that your hate of teachers does not start a war and we all are stopped from blogging on grits.

It is not the right time in TYC to start wars with co-workers in any department. No one is perfect and everyone dislikes someone.
Thanks

Anonymous said...

Slither back to your hole if you dislike the truth. The truth hurts, but teachers are a big part of the TYC problem. They come to TYC to hide.

JTP said...

Despite the inflamatory remarks that have been and continue to get posted here, this blog really has some great potential for TYC and the staff......if........Henson would condone it. That being a place to provide annonymous, yet objective feedback to the administration on the current programs within the TYC. Instead of focusing on what is wrong with a program, say in education, or in how the dorms are managed, or on the restrictions of pepper spray, maybe there could be some positive and well thought out suggestions for improvement from the field staff. If comments are not laced with venemous accusations about the ill intentions of administrators and/or co-workers, maybe, the comments would actually be read "annonymously" by someone in a position to change or write policies that get meaningful results. Writers could avoid any feared retribution by remaining annonymous. Example: Make believe hypothetical problem: Connections has no strategy that "immediately" impacts a youth's disruptive classroom behavior. Proposed hypothetical strategy: In addittion to the connections intervention, add an immediate consequence that the classroom teacher can impose on site. Now I don't hava a particular solution for this myself, but I would like to know what the JCO's and the teachers who work in education have to suggest. If we as TYC employees can start changing our own mindset from one of negative defeatism to one of being professionals committed to solving problems, albeit annonymously, maybe this blog site could become inspirational and productive. Of course, that may not be appropriate to this site, and if so, Grits will so inform. Anybody got any other problems they can identify with workable solutions? There are people blogging here who bring lots of experience and knowledge about TYC and Juvenile Justice to the blog, but it seems to get wasted because there is not any "focus". I'm just curious if anyone feels the same way

Anonymous said...

I used to work at the West Texas State School. I quit because I found the prison culture to be discusting.
But, it was an easy job and the money was good. The grazing out there was as good as I've seen anywhere. Thats the kind of place a person gets fat from the lack of activity. Its a shame to hear of more people getting shoved off the gravy train. But, its probably best for them whether they can see it at the moment.

Anonymous said...

At Mart all the layoffs appear to be clerks (almost every one of them, this after a hiring freeze on clerks for the last several months), and some case workers who just started in those positions. Generally, the least costly positions, and ones that will hinder the information flow and documentation process. I don't see where the cuts made any sense in terms of making clear decisions about what programs are important. Rather, it appears that there is just a trim of the only place that there can be cuts without facing prioritization of programs

Anonymous said...

It seems obvious to me that what we see going on at TYC is retribution. Somebody at TYC made Gov. Perry or some of his compadres awfully angry or something like that. The West Texas scandal was not a big secret. It was turned in many times and just swept under a rug. I believe there is evidence that proves Perry's office knew and ignored. Maybe that's why all of this is happening. It's the only thing that makes any sense. Every move made since Harris left has been detrimental to the agency. It was like a big set up for failure. The agency. The inept, cowardly, step and fetch it style management of Harris had already left the agency in turmoil. What Perry, Whitmire and company did just made it worse. They have torn the agency apart and now they are laying employees off. I've never seen anything like it. Kimbrough, Neidlekoff(sp), Pope, not to mention all of the others did nothing but damage the agency. Whitmire decided Resocialization was the root of all evil and ordered it removed without having anything else in place. Resocialization was a good program and at least was some stability to cling to. I can't help but believe that was an intentional move. The staff were ordered not to even mention resocialization but they had to use it because they had nothing else. That stupid Connextions has never been implemented. On top of that the kids were totally out of control because they knew, and still do that all they have to do is cry abuse and the staff was screwed and still are daily. What you have is a dangerous chaotic environment. That is not a theraputic environment. There is no treatment going on and you can't tell those fools in the leg and Perry's office don't know. I don't swallow their BS and I sure do believe that they should have to answer for it. They have failed. All they did was replace bad with worse. This whole thing is totally outrageous. I say stop the madness now. Hammer those guys as hard as you can and stand up for TYC. I'm tired of watching them destroy the agency. Politicians should not be immuned from anything. They need to under the microscope, not the other way around.

Anonymous said...

There are many knowledgable, experienced professionals on this blog that could really help the agency. PLEASE LISTEN TO THEM. There's alot of trash, but if you read closely you will see recurrent ideas being expressed several times.

Anonymous said...

Many of the good, knowledgeble staff left TYC from frustration caused by administrators and management. Some were ran off, others were simply burned out. The kids were not the big problem; its management and still is. Combine the agencies, get rid of most of the management, old and new; and start fresh. That's the only way the system can survive.

Anonymous said...

Now would be a good time to clean up the agency. Many of the people who for years did the most to promote and cover up the corruption are still doing their thing and running things on the local turf. They still support their loyal clique and look out for the protected ones.

Why do we still allow this?

Anonymous said...

Of course you must mean Giddings State School. How this continues to go on is beyond me. I have witnessed so much coruption here and it just goes on and on. Why are these people protected so they can continue to trash this institution? Cherie knows, but Cherie won't act on it.

JTP said...

Even if it is true that individual jobs are being protected because of friendships, sucking up, etc. So what? Aside from venting frustration about an unfair world, what does it change? If Giddings is corrupt, who among you is going to call the Executive Director, the media, the OIG, the whoever, and provide a list of undisputable facts to back up your beliefs? And even if you had a list to share, how is it going to change what is happening now in the agency, weather it is at Victory Field, Giddings, Brownwood or anywhere else? Venting is fine, but we are still looking at the train coming down the tracks whether we believe it is fair or not. What are we going to do about it? Is there anything that we can do that will shape the agency, which is certain to change weather we like it or not? Are there not "constructive" or "productive" suggestions that we have? Somebody..........Anybody...

Anonymous said...

It makes you wonder if those pointing fingers and saying a campus leadership is corrupt don't have an axe to grind. I mean, we have an OIG that breaths down our neck daily. I don't see how anything can be "corrupt" and rise to the level of being illegal with these guys around. Maybe you need a new word, because corrupt aint cutting it given that fact. If you don't like your facility's leadership style, then that's fine, but just because you have a difference with someone in your facilities leadership does't make them corrupt.

Anonymous said...

WOW....544...you must be extremely new to the agency or part of the problem. Were you brainwashed by Austin? This has been going on for years and even with the changes.....it's still going on....you cover for me; I cover for you; if you really don't see this, get your eyes checked or see a phychologist.....not one of Giddings. Were you given money to come as you have? Tragedy.

Anonymous said...

Scott sounds like we are headed for more TYC BS. Shut the trail down on all this. Its over. Has been for years. Its just now a written in black and white much like the inmates in TYC. Face it they are criminals who need help. And none of you mofo's on here are capable of of helping them.

Quit crying about your job and join the rest of America in the unemployment line.

Anonymous said...

Sounds to me like it is time to shut it down Grits.

All those who talk about corruption and cover ups,What are these people covering? what is the corruption? Sexual abuse? What does any of this have to do with layoffs? why are you going after psychologists? Where are the facts? Your complete dismissal of the influence of increased OIG, OIO, youth rights, hotline, etc. etc. etc. lowers your credibility. Inform everyone you need to inform and stay on topic. It is unfortunate that the layoffs didn't get rid of some of the veteran, lazy, actively retired types. Layoffs may have been necessary, but why you would cut caseworkers and teachers at institutions which clearly won't be closed is beyond me.

combining TYC and TJPC will not save the money it claims. It may not be a bad idea but clearly will not solve either agencies problems and will likely cause more.

Anonymous said...

10:47, isn't this string about job layoffs. people can clearly criticize how these happened.

As for the integrity of comments on the string yours did nothing to improve it.

Anonymous said...

Yeh 1047...who made you lord and censor on high? Others have comments and concerns that may not delight your fancy, however, we don't all fancy your comments. Get back a bit and let others have their chance here. This is not just about you, even though you seem to think you are rather special.

Anonymous said...

As an outsider, Grits, I appreciate your strings that allow TYC people to vent some anger. I don't think they should get out of hand, but they do need to say what they see and feel about TYC conditions. It had been kept a secret, apparently for years, until it all exploded in 2007. Most of the posts seem sincere and provide an insight to this dreadful occupation. Hopefully, someone in a power position will act on these strained conditions that effect youth and employees. Thanks for your help.

Anonymous said...

47.......You just lost any credibility you may have had earlier. Your post is hateful, distastful and wanting of any feelings of many people recently hurt by all this shuffling in TYC. Go to anothet post if you dislike what you read here. You are not the only one in the spotlight...turd.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Yup, by the time people are alleging "corruption" at individual units when the post has nothing to do with that and gloating over other people's misfortune, I agree it's time to shut it down. Y'all have had a good discussion here, but I'm afraid its usefulness has played out.

In this case, the turning point for me was the commenter who wants to allege corruption at Giddings but provides nothing but smears to support it. Similarly, sweeping smears about teachers help no one when there's no constructive angle to the criticism.

Henceforth every TYC post will stay open for comments as long as people are polite and on topic. But I'm not going to spend all my time deleting comments, and when you start ranting about your coworkers or supervisors at individual units or broadly alleging corruption with no obvious reference, I won't argue with you anymore, I'll just end comments on that post. And if such garbage continues, I'll eliminate comments on TYC strings altogether, permanently.

The vast majority of TYC commenters are behaving like adults and it would be a shame if a handful of trolls ruined the blog for everybody. Thanks to those who contributed to a productive discussion. To you, I apologize for limiting your platform here.