Sexual harassment in the workplace: ASUPD’s dirty little secret!

There have been several posts on indeed.com (here is the entire post with no retractions) that reference the widespread nature of sexual harassment that transpires at ASUPD. It’s hard for people with an outside perspective to really understand the situation, so we wanted to spell it out as clearly as we could. This is, by no means, a complete list of all the instances of sexual harassment that have transpired at ASUPD.

·         Naga (indeed.com):

o   the officer who, upon finding used sex toys in a transients belongings, chased and threw them at other officers on scene while the subject was being processed;

o   Let’s also not forget all of the sexual harassment claims against the former assistant chief, who was allowed to retire with full benefits and is now Director of Emergency Preparedness at ASU. Could it be due to the wife of the former assistant chief being the HR manager of the department? Could it also be due to the former head of dispatch being friends with said HR manager and subsequently driving away all of the dispatchers who made said claims?

·         Insideview (indeed.com):

o   The chief gave a sexual harassment investigation on a former AC to AZDPS (Arizona Department of Public Safety) to investigate, they returned the results of the investigation, and the chief left it sealed on his desk for over a year until the subject of the complaint could exit his position and get into another state job.

o   Everyone here knows how retaliation works because we see it in real time, have no independent system of oversight, and conflicts of interest, ethical abuses are allowed to run wild. Example; when a sergeant becomes known for peeping on couples having intercourse from beginning to end, females urinating in public, disappearing on duty with females, and with complaint after complaint this individual rises up to police commander and then assistant chief of the department? I would go as far as saying this behavior is rewarded, encouraged, and the norm.

o   Another ASUPD assistant chief had a history with sexual no no’s in the workplace when he left on a hot seat from his former police department. He arrived in time to give all the ASUPD employees a formal presentation on ethics and said he’d nail anyone getting a free Big Gulp.

·         T Doggs (indeed.com):

o   One bucking for sergeant, known for how much he thinks he knows, but doesn’t know about police work, has put a great deal of energy into sexual harassment. To date there isn’t one single female that has worked around him that he hasn’t come on to and asked out for a date, even ones dating other officers, dispatchers, etc. One finally complained formally, while the others complained informally fearing he is a supervisor and what that could do to their jobs.

o   When a department doesn’t take steps to curb unethical behavior, sexual harassment bordering on procurement it sends a clear message. That message to the public is, “This is a brothel masquerading as a police department.”

·         Naga (indeed.com):

o   Insideview, so what if all of the parties were free and in the clear, does that still excuse the behavior of that former AC or of the chief? Just because all of the dispatchers that were sexually harassed got run off by AC’s HR wife and dispatch lead friend doesn’t mean it never happened.

o   For example, said former AC who started out in ASU PD patrol, liked to watch couple have sex on campus. How’d he get all the way up to AC position? Same former AC had multiple sexual harassment claims against him? How’d he keep his position? The answer to both is because his supervisor(s) did nothing about it. If those stories are well known, so well known in fact that new hires are told about this, how is it his supervisors “didn’t know anything?”.

Let’s not forget to mention several more instances that are public knowledge at ASUPD that aren’t mentioned on indeed.com!

o   This newly promoted Corporal (Cpl L) that has asked out every female in the department, and is so overbearing many do not want to work with him.

o   Cpl. L has made comments around female employees about not being able to “control himself”.

o   Cpl. L has urinated, in public, in front of a female employee.

o   This newly promoted Sergeant (Sgt N) has scouted for tail while on duty, and has had a physical relationship with a 20 year old Resident Assistant.

o   This Commander (Cmdr. L) has had sexual relations with a prostitute.

o   This former Assistant Chief (AC J) has made remarks about wanting to fire a female officer who was taking FMLA time.

o   This night squad (several people in Tempe, midnight shift) has made offensive sexual remarks to a gay male ASUPD employee.

We hate to sensationalize these instances of sexual harassment and deviancy, but they serve to highlight the hostile nature of ASUPD’s work environment.

UWE stadium: What it means for UWE students

After “nearly two years” of negotiations with Bristol Rovers Football Club (BRFC), UWE’s Public Relations (PR) proudly made a “ground-breaking” announcement this summer that 9.3 hectares of the land at Frenchay would be used … to build a massive stadium! Strange announcement to make and to read, not only because UWE is making cuts across most services and staff justified on the basis of claims of public deficit, but also because one might wonder why UWE’s senior managers spent so much time talking to a football club.

From BRFC’s perspective, when asked “Why plan for 20,000 spectators given the club’s recent relegation and existing attendances at games?“, the justification provided is that this capacity matches the club’s ambitions, to attract new players (sic!) and to provide a better experience for existing and new fans (note the resonance with the notion of student experience cherished by UWE top management and UWESU ‘leaders’). I can’t get my head around the fact that this is somehow the people who came up with this plan believe these to be credible and legitimate justification (for themselves and for others), but that’s not the point of this post!

From UWE’s perspective, according to Steve West (UWE’s Vice-Chancellor), this is an “exciting strategic agreement which will bring tremendous benefits to the University, students and the local community” (emphasis added). So what are such expected tremendous benefits? According to UWE’s website, the key benefits of this investment are:

While UWE’s 2011 financial report states that “will bring investment of approximately £30 million pounds to the University”, the cost of the stadium remains unclear and no revenues from it have been evoked.  The cost breakdown is not mentioned on the UWE stadium website. The relevant UWE webpage announces that it “represents a significant investment by BRFC of approximately £40m”. However, according to the Western Eye: “The overall scheme is thought to be in the region of £60 million, a significant investment for quality facilities by both parties” (emphasis added). Finally, according to a webpage on UWESU’s website, UWE will only be paying for the car park.

As always, UWESU’s ‘leaders’ did not provide students with any analysis or information about what is going on. In fact, it is most likely that they did even not bother to make any analysis, as usual, just relayed propaganda from the university’s PR office or so-called senior management. According to a webpage on UWESU’s website updated this summer, they merely picked up argument about Varsity:

Nadia Harding [Nadia Harding was UWESU’s Sports President for 2010/2011], Sports Predisdent [sic] has responded to the news: “UWESU will be delighted to have a stadium on campus where students can hold their Varsity’s on home ground!

UWESU’s webpage evokes that this announcement has caused a lot of criticisms from students. This is not surprising given the absurdity of the project, but also since the decision has been made by the clique at the top of the university without any discussion and came up as a surprise to most staff and students. [UWESU elected officers later refused to make further comments or obstructed requests for accountability; Colin Offler, UWESU’s president, also ignored a request to share the criticisms the Students’ Union had received from students.]

The Western Eye, UWESU’s newspaper operated as a relay of senior management’s propaganda by publishing in the frontpage of its October 2011 issue an article by Jamie Anderson enthusiastically entitled: “UWE Stadium To Go Above And Beyond Expectations“. The article did mention but quickly moved away from “fears from local residents regarding the expected high volume of traffic congestion, as well as possible noise pollution from other events”. It did not mention anything about students’ criticisms.

To legitimate an already made decision, that has been — and is being — contested, proponents of this project are now planning the usual so-called ‘consultation’. According to the UWE stadium website, the consultation “very much welcome input to the developing proposals from local residents, businesses and Club supporters” … but not UWE students.