Sunday, March 2, 2008

City settles Parks bias case

Moving to close the books on a long and ugly chapter in New York’s employment history, the city has agreed to pay more than $20 million to settle a federal class-action lawsuit charging that the Department of Parks and Recreation systematically discriminated against black and Hispanic employees in awarding jobs and setting salaries, lawyers for the plaintiffs said Tuesday.

City Agrees to Settlement in Parks Dept. Bias Case

In announcing the agreement, lawyers and the plaintiffs painted a portrait of an agency that under its long-serving commissioner, Henry J. Stern, routinely rewarded a handpicked coterie of inexperienced white workers with plum assignments at the expense of experienced black and Hispanic employees.

From the original complaint:

Dorothy Lewandowski, a white employee, was promoted to Chief of Operations for the Bronx when then-Parks Commissioner Henry Stern called her and informed her that she was being promoted from Deputy Chief of Operations for Queens. Again, Parks promoted Lewandowski to this position without ever having posted a vacancy notice, solicited applications, or conducted a formal interview process. (Lewandowski is now the Queens Parks Commissioner.)

Whenever you see something stupid happening in a Queens park, remember that may be because the person in charge is not qualified.

Photo from Bronx Times

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

This really sickens me.

If someone is passed over for a promotion, maybe, JUST maybe the person who got the job is indeed more qualified. Why does it always have to comes down to race?

In reading that complaint:"21. Parks uses its "Class Of" program in furtherance of its pattern or practice of discrimination against black and Hispanic employees, creating a separate promotional track for white Class Of participants whom Parks recruits directly from college."

How is hiring and promoting people with college educations over those with HS diplomas discriminatory?

Just because the people with the college degrees just happened to be white?

I'm sure there were educated people of color that got hired out of college but obviously weren't named in this report.

Why do people always assume that if a white person got hired, he/she was less qualified??

I'm sorry if you don't post this, but I'm just venting now.

What a waste of $20 million on a BS lawsuit.

Anonymous said...

"Parks promoted Lewandowski to this position without ever having posted a vacancy notice, solicited applications, or conducted a formal interview process."

Now we know how she got to the top. It wasn't based on creativity and innovativeness. She kissed butt plain and simple. She's made our lives miserable.

Lewandowski doesn't have a clue how to lead. Most of us in Parks despise "the Queen" for her robotic approach to just about everything. I'm counting the days until I'm out of there.

georgetheatheist said...

Further Henry Stern:

1. Why does Schenkler at the Tribune prominently display Stern's "column" week after week on the editorial page? Do YOU, dear reader, every pay attention to it?

2. What was that bit with that card and fruitcake (hahaha) Stern giving out "name tags" left and right with official parks logos? (Anyone know what Lewandowski's "handle" was?)

Queens Crapper said...

Parks promotes Class Of participants to management positions for which it never posts vacancy notices, seeks applications, or conducts a formal interview process. This is wrong.

Anonymous said...

"... 18. In addition, Dorothy Lewandowski, a white employee, was promoted to Chief of Operations for the Bronx when then-Parks Commissioner Henry Stern called her and informed her that she was being promoted from Deputy Chief of Operations for Queens. Again, Parks promoted Lewandowski to this position without ever having posted a vacancy notice, solicited applications, or conducted a formal interview process. ..."

" ... 24. Parks promotes Class Of participants to management positions for which it never posts vacancy notices, seeks applications, or conducts a formal interview process. Indeed, certain management positions are created specifically for Class Of recruits, so that it is impossible for anyone else to apply, interview, and be considered for the positions. ..."

Why did Henry Stern pick Lewandowski for this illegal promotion? What were her qualifications? Are we to believe that Lewandowski was ignorant of the promotion process? That she didn't know the requirements for posting a vacancy notice (perhaps she qualified on that: her brain is vacant), she didn't complete or submit an application. and her only interview was a phone call from Stern?

Why did Benepe persist in this fraud? Why did Bloomberg assist in the cover-up? (Let's never forget the sexual harassment lawsuits against this world champion "manager"; Bloomberg, you moron, you just cost us more than $20 million for cooperating with this racist pig of a department!)

Has Lewandowski compensated the victim of her fraud? Has she restored the minority employee's dignity and replenished his or her table with the food she has stolen?

Where do Bloomberg, Benepe and Lewandowski hold their KKK meetings? Do they burn crosses? No wonder Bloomberg was so wrought when he claimed to be offended by the cartoon of the noose; he and the other pair probably claimed the right to use the noose as their sole right.

Should we sit still while Benepe and Lewandowski (who cost us $20 million plus) continue to stay on our payroll?

*** Anonymous # 2: Please be patient. It's this vile crew who need to go, not you. Parks employees are probably among the greatest folks around. Their love of the outdoors and nature is a wonder to behold. The crime here is that fine people were taken advantage of by sickeningly grasping and ambitious people with no conscience. That includes the KKK grand dragon Bloomberg and his lapdancing cross-burner, Benepe.

Bloomberg knew of this condition since the lawsuit was filed and did nothing! World-class manager!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous # 1:

Is that you, Benepe? Or, Stern? (Perhaps you, Lewandowski?)

Why not have the city obey all the laws each employee took an oath to obey and enforce?

Is that a difficult concept? Or, is it difficult when the law obstructs your corruption?

Jackie said...

Leave Dottie Lewandowski alone, she can't help it if Henry Stern and his equally corrupt successor, Ranger Boy Adrian Benepe, promoted her. Who wouldn't take a promotion? Granted she's not half the leader Ricardo was but focus your negative comments on Stern and Benepe. Both of these idiots have decimated Parks and at the present time morale is at an all-time low.

David M. Quintana said...

I see what you mean Jackie, they (Benepe and Stern) were the main culprits...but a case can be made about Ms Lewandowski's dismal lack of leadership and incompetence...there are lots of examples of her arrogance and lack of leadership qualifications...but lets just look at one, the Ridgewood Reservoir situation...under Ms Lewandowski the Parks Dept held listening sessions to gauge public opinion..when those listening sessions showed that the people wanted it to be used as a nature preserve and wildlife sanctuary...Ms Lewandowski with all her wisdom chose to go forth with plans to destroy and decimate the natural environment of the site by breaching the retaining wall and deciding to install artificial turf fields...I can't imagine the costs to date for the plans to drawn up for the artificial fields but I would assume they are astronomical and were totally unnecessary had the wishes of the community been simply adhered to...so Jackie although I agree Henry Stern and Adrian Benepe should get the lion's share of the blame...it's people like Lewandowski who perpetuate the bad decisions made and add to the cost of projects by their incompetence and arrogance...

Anonymous said...

Ms. Lewandowski likes to read blogs about her borough and I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if "sickened anonymous" was her.

Queens Crapper said...

"What was that bit with that card and fruitcake (hahaha) Stern giving out "name tags" left and right with official parks logos? (Anyone know what Lewandowski's "handle" was?)"

I THINK HER NICKNAME WAS "DOT THE ROBOT"

Anonymous said...

Dorothy Lewandowski is the cold hearted ice queen. It's tough to please her and you MUST watch your back or she'll banish you to Siberia.

Careful who you speak to at the O.

Anonymous said...

I have always found Commissioner Lewandowski and her staff to be professional & courteous even when they are being attacked and ridiculed on a very personal & vicious level.

Why does a woman acting professional have to be labeled an ice queen or worse. Anyone who says they would not accept a promotion is not being honest!

Anonymous said...

Anon said:
"I have always found Commissioner Lewandowski and her staff to be professional & courteous even when they are being attacked and ridiculed on a very personal & vicious level.

Why does a woman acting professional have to be labeled an ice queen or worse. Anyone who says they would not accept a promotion is not being honest!"

Who attacked Hillary Lewandowski on a [very] personal level?

Who attacked her staff?

Is it professional for Lewandowski to attempt to obstruct the distribution of publications (a newspaper and magazine) in a public park to the public?

Is it professional to give her oath of office the heave-ho whenever it suits her?

Is it professional for any municipal employee - for example, a commissioner and subordinate - to trade jobs and promotions belonging to minorities for personal (perhaps sexual) benefit?

Is it professional for any city employee - for example a commissioner or a subordinate - to take meals from the children of fellow minority employees?

Surround yourself with utterly corrupt people and it never occurs to you that, indeed, there are people honest enough to refuse to steal from anyone - whether the stealing is in the form of taking things, or in the form of taking food and clothing from the children of others who are too helpless to resist.

Oh, yeah, that's what thugs do; take from those too helpless to resist.

So, who is the thug who wrote this comment? Bloomberg? Benepe? Lewandowski? Stern? Each who has proven themselves to be a lying thug. [by the way, moron writer, try spell check; it saves highlighting your illiteracy]

Finally: Lewandowski, don't you yet understand that you were set up to be the fall guy? Why were you picked, you need to ask.

But, as has been the KKK Modus Operandi, there always has to be one of the KK Klansmen unmasked and punished. You can always even things. Speak up!

Anonymous said...

Any relation to that obnoxious Shiela of the same last name at the Chocolate Factory?