Thursday, September 13, 2012

Is the deck stacked against Mary Wilson?

Mary Wilson, who was abruptly fired as Mecklenburg County's DSS director last week, says she can't get a fair appeal because the man who fired her also has final say over her appeal.

In a letter today to Mecklenburg County commissioners, Wilson asks commissioners to intervene. She says County Manager Harry Jones, who terminated her, also has the final word on any appeal.

"I am requesting that you consider how we can have a fair, transparent resolution to this situation," Wilson wrote to commissioners. "Perhaps a representative sub-set of the BOCC can serve as a review panel."

Wilson said her termination came as a complete surprise, that her last review was in October 2011 and that she hadn't been confronted about poor job performance.

Wilson raises an intriguing point that has bothered us from the moment her firing was announced: County commissioners were not notified of her termination until after it happened, even though they are ultimately responsible for DSS's performance.

Wilson oversaw the county's largest department, with more than 1,000 employees and a $161 million budget. Her tenure was marked in part by controversies over her spending and hiring practices.

This story surely has two or more sides to it. The county has not said specifically why Wilson was terminated. But it does seem Wilson would have a hard time getting an impartial review of her appeal if the county manager who fired her has the final say on it.

Here's Wilson's letter to commissioners (click to enlarge).

-- Taylor Batten


Wiley Coyote said... can't make this stuff up...

Anonymous said...

She has a point about the appeal process - not just that the "firing manager" hears the appeal, but that the "firing manager" is a complete fool.

Deep down, she has to know that her firing is justified, even if a complete fool fired her. DSS is so corrupt it would make some of Chicago's dirtiest mob bosses blush. If people under her weren't completely financing their personal lives with taxpayer money, and if she wasn't promoting people based on their race, her shock and outrage wouldn't ring so hollow.

She should drop the appeal and go work for the NAACP. Since the NAACP is every bit as racist as the KKK, her racism would fit in just fine.

BolynMcClung said...


Mary was terminated on September 3rd
Letter was written on September 13th.

It's Mecklenburg County letterhead and the title she uses is "Director."

Was she still on the job on the 13th? Is there some technicality that allows her this and other privileges or courtesies as a former employee asking for restitution?

Bolyn McClung

Reggie Mantle said...

""Perhaps a representative sub-set of the BOCC can serve as a review panel."

Let me guess: Vilma Leake, George Dunlap and throw in Dumont Clarke just so it's not too obvious.