Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Mayor de Blasio Jumps to Dark Side

I'm shocked to hear the mayor of New York City, a man who rose to prominence with a progressive agenda, offhandedly dismiss the bulk of sexual harassment complaints in the Department of Education. We now see over 100 complaints simply disappearing:

A veteran city educator who said officials botched her sexual harassment case is calling out Mayor de Blasio for shaming victims — and omitting dozens of sexual harassment complaints from recently published city statistics.

The educator, who asked to remain anonymous because she fears retaliation, said she was sickened to hear de Blasio say this week that the Education Department substantiated less than 2% of complaints because of a "hyper-complaint dynamic" in the city agency.

I've been to a whole lot of hearings with city reps, on very black and white issues. I've watched city reps actually suggest arguments to my principal when they were supposed to be judging an issue. I'm trying to determine exactly anyone would assume an agency that judges itself would do so fairly. I mean, UFT loses almost all Step Two Complaints. Are we just a bunch of whiners who complain about whatever?

Clearly the mayor would assume so. I mean, if he can make that assumption about people complaining of sexual harassment,  he must have even less regard for teachers who complain of untimely letters in file. People who've experienced sexual harassment have even stronger words for the mayor. In fact, courts have determined the city to be wrong;

"I'm certainly offended that Mayor de Blasio would say that," said the educator, who sued the city over her harassment by a supervisor and won a settlement.

"With a wife and daughter of his own, I was in shock," she added.

She called the city Education Department's investigation into her claims "a long, complicated, ugly process," that ultimately failed to bring her justice.

"No one would go through this if it were not true," she said. "It is a horrific experience. It upends your entire life."

I have to concur. Who on earth would want to not only go through this, but also relive it? It's nothing less than disgraceful that the mayor would simply assume city lawyers know best. I'm not even persuaded city lawyers have been through first grade, considering their perpetual inability to understand the UFT Collective Bargaining Agreement. Can you imagine people of that caliber making decisions about whether or not you were sexually harassed? It boggles the mind.

I'm not really disappointed in the city's lawyers, as anyone who's tangled with DOE "legal" knows they are a bunch of self-serving boobs with no interest whatsoever in the truth. But I expected better from this mayor. I worked for him and contributed to him, hoping he'd be the anti-Bloomberg. In any case, he's supposed to be where the buck stops here in NYC.

Instead, he stereotypes a whole group of educators. Unless he has personally investigated each and every one of these cases, he's got no business doing so. It's time for Mayor de Blasio to step up and start serving the truth, as opposed to the bloated, inept bureaucracy he inherited from Mayor Bloomberg.

Let's hope the bad publicity he gets from this is a wake-up call. Waking up is the sort of thing you're supposed to do before you go to work, or make pronouncements about large groups of people, but better late than never.
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