Over the past few months, multiple situations have come to light unveiling a pattern of failures at UConn Health that have severely damaged the public’s trust in your institution. We have seen blatant misuse of taxpayer dollars, failure to implement basic oversight, and apparent disregard for your core responsibilities to the state and people of Connecticut. I am writing today to ask UConn Health to commit to rebuilding public trust.
I wholeheartedly agree with child welfare advocates who say that children should, whenever possible and when safe to do so, be kept in their homes. Frankly, I can’t imagine anyone who would disagree. But when obvious red flags are ignored for the sake of keeping a child at home, then there is a serious problem. That is why I disagree with Richard Wexler’s portrayal of what is happening in Connecticut, and his unfair criticism of the state’s child advocate and lawmakers who have raised concerns.
Does someone have to get hurt before our state stands up for what’s right? UConn Health Center appropriately fired an individual who put the public at risk by getting high while working a job that involves driving a state vehicle and operating motorized equipment. But following an arbitration ruling in support of the employee’s case, the Connecticut Supreme Court upheld the arbiter’s finding instructing UConn Health to rehire the employee who got high on state time in a state vehicle.
Recent reports concerning the Department of Children and Families, along with Commissioner Joette Katz’s long history of failure, misplaced priorities and lack of transparency and accountability, leave me with no confidence in her willingness or ability to openly and seriously confront critical issues within her agency. That’s why I felt compelled to call for her resignation.