On October 12, a Teamster Local 320 member employed by the Hubbard County Social Service Center was subjected to adverse and disparate treatment. The Teamster member would resign from county service, but not before a grievance was filed and resolved. The circumstance of the particular grievance demonstrates just one of many examples of a hostile work environment in Hubbard County.
“The woman who resigned was unjustly disciplined,” says Business Agent Roger Meunier. “Though we resolved her grievance, the situation at the Hubbard County Social Service Center was ultimately too toxic for her to bear.”
It was at this time Secretary Treasurer Brian Aldes and Roger Meunier met with Hubbard County representatives to address the hostile work issues. Aldes and Meunier instructed the County in no uncertain terms that Teamsters Local 320 would go public with the numerous examples and complaints of deleterious treatment of employees.
“The County did not want to battle the Teamsters in the public arena,” says Aldes. “County representatives realized that drastic changes to the Social Service Center are needed to boost morale and stem further resignations. The woman who resigned was not only an impeccable employee, but a military veteran who served our country during conflict.”
On November 5, Hubbard County agreed to retain the services of an Organizational Development Consultant to assess the current workplace environment and make recommendations to improve collaboration and morale for social services staff.
“Many of us were able to freely discuss our concerns about bullying in the workplace, micromanagement as well as an overall lack of trust in our leadership here at the Hubbard County Social Service Center,” says Jennifer Keranen, Social Worker for Adult Protection. “This is a step in the right direction and Hubbard County Commissioners are finally taking our concerns seriously. We have lost many good staff due to the treatment they have endured. In a time when we are asked to do more with less, we need to spend our energy on our clients, not reacting to a toxic environment.”
The team at Teamsters Local 320 will continue to make its own assessment of the situation and looks forward to reviewing the proposed plan from the consultant on December 17, 2018.