ICYMI: Public Safety Fiscal Manager Resigns, Citing Lack of Leadership and Accountability


Last month, Cleveland Public Safety employee Shawn Gidley tendered his resignation in a letter made public this week — a letter in which he describes losing faith in the city and watching poor management follow in the wake of three high-profile scandals.

The letter comes at a time when the Public Safety Department is facing calls for dismissal of top-ranking administration officials. Even when City Councilman Jeff Johnson challenged Public Safety Director Michael McGrath, the former police chief walked out on a public meeting and refused to answer questions. Mayor Frank Jackson has staunchly defended Public Safety leadership.

Here's the full Dec. 17 letter:
Director McGrath-

I would like to inform you that I am resigning from my position as Public Safety Fiscal Manager for the City of Cleveland effective Monday January 12th, 2015.

I began working for the City of Cleveland in January of 2002 and transferred to the Department of Public Safety as Fiscal Manager in 2006. I enjoyed both my position and the work I completed, believing it was making the City of Cleveland a better place to live. Unfortunately, there have been events over the past three years in the Department of Public Safety and under Mayor Jackson's Administration that have changed this belief.

- The 2011 Cleveland Fire Department payroll scandal
- The Cleveland Police Chase in November 2012
- The shooting death of Tamir Rice

These events show a pattern of management that is lacking the required employee oversight, fails to provide the proper employee training, and management that is not being held accountable for the actions that take place within the Department of Public Safety. The Department of Justice report released December 2014 sited (sic) years of "insufficient accountability, inadequate training  and ineffective policies" within the Cleveland Police Department. These management and leadership issues ended with a child paying the ultimate price.

The Department of Public Safety and the City of Cleveland is no longer an employer for which I am proud to work. It does not provide the leadership that the residents of Cleveland deserve.

My last day in the office will be Wednesday, January 7th, 2015.


Shawn Gidley

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.