ICYMI: Public Safety Fiscal Manager Resigns, Citing Lack of Leadership and Accountability

Last month, Cleveland Public Safety employee Shawn Gidley tendered his resignation in a letter made public this week — a letter in which he describes losing faith in the city and watching poor management follow in the wake of three high-profile scandals.

The letter comes at a time when the Public Safety Department is facing calls for dismissal of top-ranking administration officials. Even when City Councilman Jeff Johnson challenged Public Safety Director Michael McGrath, the former police chief walked out on a public meeting and refused to answer questions. Mayor Frank Jackson has staunchly defended Public Safety leadership.

Here's the full Dec. 17 letter:
Director McGrath-

I would like to inform you that I am resigning from my position as Public Safety Fiscal Manager for the City of Cleveland effective Monday January 12th, 2015.

I began working for the City of Cleveland in January of 2002 and transferred to the Department of Public Safety as Fiscal Manager in 2006. I enjoyed both my position and the work I completed, believing it was making the City of Cleveland a better place to live. Unfortunately, there have been events over the past three years in the Department of Public Safety and under Mayor Jackson's Administration that have changed this belief.

- The 2011 Cleveland Fire Department payroll scandal
- The Cleveland Police Chase in November 2012
- The shooting death of Tamir Rice

These events show a pattern of management that is lacking the required employee oversight, fails to provide the proper employee training, and management that is not being held accountable for the actions that take place within the Department of Public Safety. The Department of Justice report released December 2014 sited (sic) years of "insufficient accountability, inadequate training  and ineffective policies" within the Cleveland Police Department. These management and leadership issues ended with a child paying the ultimate price.

The Department of Public Safety and the City of Cleveland is no longer an employer for which I am proud to work. It does not provide the leadership that the residents of Cleveland deserve.

My last day in the office will be Wednesday, January 7th, 2015.

Sincerely,

Shawn Gidley

About The Author

Eric Sandy

Eric Sandy is an award-winning Cleveland-based journalist. For a while, he was the managing editor of Scene. He now contributes jam band features every now and then.
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