Yes, the County is apparently a pretty good place to work – if you’re a bully.
Starting right near the top, with the head of HR, Rich Sill, bullying is the dominant theme. Before Sill was hand-picked by Mike Chapman and Jim Jones to be head of HR, he worked in Code Enforcement, where he bullied a worker out of his job. The worker sued the County; the County lost. Everybody paid, in terms of lower employee morale and higher insurance costs for the County. Your tax dollars at work!
Further down the food chain, in the Health & Human Services department, the manager of the public health program and nurses, Christina Hurst, is such a notorious bully that some of her employees (who actually feared for their own physical safety working with her) secretly videotaped her out of control behavior. When Hurst found out about this, heads rolled, and one of the women who had recorded her was fired.
But that wasn’t enough for Hurst. Now she’s suing the woman, because a good bully just doesn’t know when to stop, do they?
And I’m sure we all remember Dr. Holiday’s official complaint of being bullied at Clallam County. Well guess what? It’s been verified from a pretty reliable source: The woman who replaced her, Leeann Grasseth, is being bullied in the exact same way, by the same supervisor – Judith Anderson. Taking things up a notch, Anderson has even “forbidden” Grasseth to talk to one of the members of her own anti-drug coalition. It must be kind of hard to run a coalition when you’re not “allowed” to talk with the members. That’s crazy, right?
But such craziness is well-known and condoned by Anderson’s own supervisor, Iva Burks, who also is well aware of Hurst’s well-documented abusive behavior. But Burks is fine with it all, and is actually quite close to Hurst. Talk around the courthouse is that Burks is grooming Hurst to take her job when she retires.
And finally, to bring the circle to a close, Burks’ shortcomings in dealing with her abusive employees is well-known by the head of HR, Rich Sill, who is fine with the status quo as well.
All this in addition to the increasingly public temper tantrums and shout downs from County Commissioner Mike Chapman. All this in addition to the steady program of revenge and terrorizing that has marked Sheila Roark Miller’s first term in office. And on and on and on.
Yes, Clallam County is a pretty good place to work – if you’re a bully. For everyone else, it’s more like a war zone. No wonder the County can’t hire or retain good people. No wonder the County is regularly getting sued by its own employees.
Your tax dollars at work…What can you tell us about Clallam County? Why is it such a dysfunctional place?