Union President: Time for Listenbee to Go, OJJDP Has Spiraled Out of Control | Robert Listenbee | Continue Reading â†’ | Next ArticleUnion President: Time for Listenbee to Go, OJJDP Has Spiraled Out of Control
Union President: Time for Listenbee to Go, OJJDP Has Spiraled Out of Control | Youth Today
WASHINGTON - The head of the union representing employees at the federal Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention has called for the resignation of OJJDP Administrator Robert L. Listenbee Jr., saying the agency has "spiraled out of control" and morale has plummeted under his leadership.
"I just don't see how Mr. Listenbee can legitimately lead OJJDP forward through the crisis that his employees are currently facing," said Marilyn Moses, president of Local 2830 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME).
Juvenile justice advocates as well as OJJDP staffers had hailed President Barack Obama's appointment of Listenbee
in early 2013, saying the longtime Philadelphia juvenile defense attorney and juvenile justice reformer would improve morale and bring direction to the agency.
took over in March 2013, the agency had been beset by low morale and a lack of effective leadership, employees said.
"They had high hopes for [Listenbee] when he came on board," Moses said, "now they have been bitterly disappointed."
In the letter, Moses urged Mason to bring in an outside management consultant to review the union's findings and recommend "whether Mr. Listenbee's
resignation would be in the best interest of the organization" or if the consultant could "craft a strength-based path forward."
They communicated to me over and over again that they do not feel that Listenbee
trusts them and does not call upon them for input, and that they feel that they're not trusted to do their jobs, not allowed to do their jobs.
came to the agency with a reputation as an effective juvenile justice reformer.
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation's Models for Change juvenile justice reform initiative honored him in 2011 with a Champion for Change award for his
leadership in reforming the juvenile justice system in Pennsylvania.
Listenbee, the first African-American to head OJJDP, earned a bachelor's degree from Harvard University and a law degree from the University of California at Berkeley.
He served for 27 years as a trial lawyer with the Defender Association of Philadelphia, including 16 years as chief of the association's juvenile unit.
also co-chaired the Attorney General's National Task Force on Children Exposed
to Violence, which issued its final report in December 2012.