For Immediate Release
August 28, 2001
For More Information
Contact: Public Affairs Office
Secretary Michael W. Moore announced the Florida Department of Corrections, Employee Relations Investigative Unit has completed an investigation into alleged discrimination at four state institutions, finding "insufficient evidence to support a finding of cause" on the 35 allegations.
"The Department of Corrections does not and will not tolerate any kind of racial misconduct or discrimination by any employee," said Moore. "I am personally offended by racial misconduct and discrimination and pledge to vigorously address and resolve any such allegations within the department."
A majority of the identified allegations indicate management or policy discrepancies, but not systemic discrimination. The complaints investigated include: A lack of uniformity in distribution of shift assignments and new job opportunities; African American employees being promoted less often than other employees; A need to better accommodate pregnant African American females in job assignments; The need to provide training opportunities equally to all employees; African American employees being subjected to racial slurs and jokes; Female African American employees being subjected to comments of a sexual nature; and religious discrimination.
Seven full-time investigators as well as Assistant Chief of Personnel Marian Deadwiley interviewed more than 300 prison employees to determine if any religious, racial, or gender discrimination had taken place. The four-month investigation totaled more than 34,000 man-hours and determined that the allegations were anecdotal and did not provide enough functional information to substantiate a pattern of discrimination. The department will continue to monitor Tomoka Correctional Institution, Lake Correctional Institution, Marion Correctional Institution, the North Florida Reception Center, and all other institutions for any sign of activity that may warrant further investigation.
DOC management recognizes many of the complaints cited are important. "We can improve in many areas," said Michael W. Moore. "There are opportunities to better inform employees and put systems in place to ensure better communication with our employees."
Any allegations from this investigation regarding specific employees will be forwarded to the General Counsel Office for review and corrective action.
Moore said the Department of Corrections is fully committed to investigating all allegations involving alleged discrimination by staff. The department has forwarded its' investigations to the Florida Commission on Human Relations and the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to ensure independent review of our findings.
Employees are encouraged to continue reporting concerns to the Employee Relations Unit in Tallahassee. Assistant Chief of Personnel Marian Deadwiley says she will follow up on all complaints and issues. "I take my job very seriously and dedicate my staff to enforcing the laws," said Deadwiley. "Our Employee Relations staff are professionals who put our employees first - and we promise to work hard to ensure a workplace free of discrimination or retaliation."