AFSCME Tells Detroit Schools: 'Privatization Is Not the Solution!'

Apr 18, 2001, 01:00 ET from Michigan AFSCME Council 25, AFL-CIO

    DETROIT, April 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Albert Garrett, President of Michigan
 Council 25 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees
 (AFSCME), AFL-CIO, issued the following statement with regard to the 700-page
 report on Detroit Public Schools prepared by Berkshire Advisors Management
 Review:
     "This is a remarkable and voluminous report," began Garrett.  "It was
 prepared at significant cost by this consulting firm -- an outside contractor.
 Throughout the report, over and over again, this contractor recommends that
 the Detroit Schools use more outside contractors.  That may not be their
 solution for every problem, but it is certainly their idea of a solution for
 most of the problems facing us.
     "I have to wonder if the people who wrote the part of the report listing
 the problems and the people who wrote the part with the solutions ever talked
 to each other," Garrett continued.  "It is absolutely clear that some of the
 problems are the direct result of using outside contractors -- but the
 consultant is still telling us we can solve the problem by contracting out
 services!
     "For example, Medicaid and third party reimbursement services have already
 been outsourced.  The problem was the contractor, who was not effective,
 overbilled the federal government for services, and generally caused
 problems," pointed out Garrett.  "Similarly, in transportation services, there
 are already nine contractors involved.  This fragmentation of services through
 the use of for-profit contractors is a significant part of the problem.
     "Privatization is the problem, not the solution," Garrett noted.
 "Privatization is an invitation to corruption and to loot the public coffers.
     "The dedicated employees of the Detroit Public Schools can do the job
 better, at lower cost to the taxpayers.  Contractors are in business to make a
 profit.  As public employees, we're in business to provide a public service,
 without the need to make a profit," concluded Garrett.  "We look forward to
 working with the administration to make our schools a source of pride to the
 entire community."
     Albert Garrett also serves as Vice President of AFSCME International.
 Michigan AFSCME Council 25 represents more than 65,000 public workers across
 Michigan.  AFSCME International represents 1.4 million public workers
 nationwide.
 
 

SOURCE Michigan AFSCME Council 25, AFL-CIO
    DETROIT, April 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Albert Garrett, President of Michigan
 Council 25 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees
 (AFSCME), AFL-CIO, issued the following statement with regard to the 700-page
 report on Detroit Public Schools prepared by Berkshire Advisors Management
 Review:
     "This is a remarkable and voluminous report," began Garrett.  "It was
 prepared at significant cost by this consulting firm -- an outside contractor.
 Throughout the report, over and over again, this contractor recommends that
 the Detroit Schools use more outside contractors.  That may not be their
 solution for every problem, but it is certainly their idea of a solution for
 most of the problems facing us.
     "I have to wonder if the people who wrote the part of the report listing
 the problems and the people who wrote the part with the solutions ever talked
 to each other," Garrett continued.  "It is absolutely clear that some of the
 problems are the direct result of using outside contractors -- but the
 consultant is still telling us we can solve the problem by contracting out
 services!
     "For example, Medicaid and third party reimbursement services have already
 been outsourced.  The problem was the contractor, who was not effective,
 overbilled the federal government for services, and generally caused
 problems," pointed out Garrett.  "Similarly, in transportation services, there
 are already nine contractors involved.  This fragmentation of services through
 the use of for-profit contractors is a significant part of the problem.
     "Privatization is the problem, not the solution," Garrett noted.
 "Privatization is an invitation to corruption and to loot the public coffers.
     "The dedicated employees of the Detroit Public Schools can do the job
 better, at lower cost to the taxpayers.  Contractors are in business to make a
 profit.  As public employees, we're in business to provide a public service,
 without the need to make a profit," concluded Garrett.  "We look forward to
 working with the administration to make our schools a source of pride to the
 entire community."
     Albert Garrett also serves as Vice President of AFSCME International.
 Michigan AFSCME Council 25 represents more than 65,000 public workers across
 Michigan.  AFSCME International represents 1.4 million public workers
 nationwide.
 
 SOURCE  Michigan AFSCME Council 25, AFL-CIO