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Thread: Funds for Human Services and Education rejected by BOC

  1. #1
    StanN's Avatar
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    Default Funds for Human Services and Education rejected by BOC

    At its June 15th meeting to determine the 2009-10 operating budget the Wake Board of Commissioners rejected by a 4-3 vote to my motion to reprioritize the County Managers 2009-10 budget. By selected cuts in construction spending and operations, the $5.6 million cut from the previous year in the Human Services budget would be restored. Also $3 million would be added to the WCPSS budget for teachers to meet its request for a lean operating budget (that did not include either growth or inflation). Additionally, my motion to creation of a temporary reserve to anticipate the State's coming cuts in these areas was also defeated.

    No increase in property taxes would have been required.

    Voting against my motion were Commissioners Brown(D), Coble(R), Bryan(R) and Gurley(R). Voting for it were Ward(D), Webb(D) and myself.

    I have discussed funding for education on Cary Politics many times.
    Here is an another facet of the County's budget that I believe is of critical importance.

    From the May 29th N&O: "At 1 AM Wednesday, there were 11 people in Wake's crisis center awaiting involuntary commitment to a mental hospital, but there was nowhere to send them...The clients waiting included psychotic and suicidal adults, as well as adolescents. One individual need to be restrained in handcuffs. Though extra police officers were called in to help, administrators determined that it wouldn't be safe to let more patients into the building..."

    The $5.6 million for restoring the cut in Human Services' budget could have been used to pay for more beds at Holly Hill psychiatric hospital and prevent a repetition of the above event. The state has taken away many psychiatric hospital beds and is about to take away more.

    I believe its shameful that those who voted to cut the Human Services budget by $5.6 million refused to consider re-prioritizing such items as $4.35 million renovations to existing buildings; or another $3.4 million for improvements to those buildings...as well as a longer list included in my motion.

    I am outraged that at no point in 2009 or in the budget discussion, did the BOC come to grips with prioritizing both the operating and construction budgets. Think about whether those turned away by Wake County had been your children, your friends or your family.

  2. #2
    DarylB Guest

    Default Re: Funds for Human Services and Education rejected by BOC

    Quote Originally Posted by StanN View Post

    I am outraged that at no point......
    Perhaps if you had said you are "outraged...and appalled", you might have been able to get your votes, and not have had to have a public tantrum about it. Instead, that darned thing called democracy got in your way again. RAT's, foiled again....


  3. #3
    DarylB Guest

    Default Re: Funds for Human Services and Education rejected by BOC

    The bottom-dweller of soul-lessness, Ruth Sheehan, has written a piece devoid of both common sense and journalistic worth on the same subject, and it begs the question.... why is she still employed as a journalist after the shameful pot-banging lynch mob leading crusade she led against four innocent lacrosse players? She has never apologized, yet she continues.... why is this allowed? She is guilty of the most offensive moral outrage, yet she writes her vitriolic columns......

    Being that journalists usually know how to use a metaphor, I also point out to this clueless one, it's "cut the mustard", not "cut the ice", but I guess she felt her closing punch-line about the Titanic and a glacier needed a flashback, and simply wasn't creative enough to try harder at making sense. She isn't just a clueless cretin, she's also a linguistic hack!

    ‘Slow’ won’t cut the ice
    ruth.sheehan@newsobserver.com   or 919-829-4828

    Maybe they just think alike. Maybe that’s part of the problem.

    In conversations this spring, both Lanier Cansler, North Carolina’s secretary of health and human services, and Philip Cook, the new director of Cherry Hospital, used nautical metaphors — and the specter of a glacial pace — to describe fixing the state’s psychiatric facilities.

    The hospitals’ problems are nu merous, from the Cherry patient left to die i n a c h a i r a s workers chatted and cavorted around him for nearly 24 hours to this week’s allegat i o n s t h at a C e n t ra l Re gional patient was photographed partially nude on someone’s cell phone.

    Cansler and Cook, both hired as change agents, acknowledged the need for a fundamental shift in the “culture” at state-run psychiatric facilities.

    But both also stressed that change happens very slowly.

    Cook, who has been director of Cherry Hospital since early April, likened the process to a massive ocean tanker altering course in heavy seas.

    Cansler took it a step further.

    He said changing the culture of state psychiatric facilities is like turning an aircraft carrier — inside Jordan Lake.

    “It’s a slow thing,” he said. “A little bit forward, a little bit back.”

    But here’s the trouble: We’ve seen far too much backward motion and precious little forward.

    Last year, Disability Rights North Carolina, an advocacy group, sued the state over concerns about patient safety and a shortage of staff at Central Regional.

    Federal funding was yanked from Broughton Hospital in the western part of the state after a patient died while in restraints. The feds announced this spring that funding was in peril at Cherry and Central Regional.

    Over the last year and a half, psych hospital employees have been investigated for beating patients.

    Earlier this year, the SBI began investigating reports that staff on the old Dorothea Dix campus were having sex with female inmates in a work program there.

    And then, of course, there was the sad case of Steven Sabock, the 50-year-old man whose excruciating neglect at Cherry Hospital was captured on videotape.

    Lower rung employees have been suspended or fired; a couple of higher-ups have moved on to other high-paid positions. Yet some of the key administrators at these hospitals remain in place — including the Cherry nursing director whose report about Sabock contained vital signs the video proves were never taken.

    From the way Cansler, Cook and others talk about the need for change in the culture of our psych hospitals, perhaps these sorts of shenanigans have been going on for years. Perhaps the difference is that now people are paying attention.

    That’s small comfort.

    Moving forward

    Cansler and Cook said they are pushing forward with improved training for staff and communicating to them new expectations of a higher standard of care. The leaders we’re counting on for significant and long-overdue change say the aircraft carrier is ever-sogradually shifting its heading.

    But to many of us, it’s time to take a blowtorch to the carrier, drain the lake or throw the old swabs still manning the decks overboard.

    After all, when it comes to massive ships and the term glacial, something called the Titanic comes to mind.
    Please do, throw this worthless "swab" overboard, and her putrid pen with her!

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