Regarding Winograd’s prescription for No-Kill in Redemption, I have some comments.
As he says, Redemption it is mostly a history book. Out of the 226 pages, only 10 (195 to 2004) actually outline the no-kill blueprint in a very sketchy way. He makes other recommendations in other parts of his book, such as refusing cats brought in in traps and not renting out traps, which are policies not mentioned in the blueprint, but are policies implemented by Boks over a year ago.
LAAS has increased “marketing” with improved access to photos and descriptions of animals as well as where they are located on its expanded website. In fact, it is from information posted on this site we were able to determine he was warehousing animals.
LAAS does have an expanded medical care program just as I pointed out in my post on how Dr. Rao took care of the injured cat I brought in. Of course I did mention that LAAS killed over 1,000 turtles, and Mason’s kittens were not treated. So this is a mixed claim of increased care by Boks. But merely to say it needs to be expanded is not enough.
Boks’ promised partnership with Western University of course was a joke as Dan Guss, and others pointed out.
Nowhere does Nathan address how to get rid of bad employees. He only mentions that his protégé shelter directors did that. How do you do it in strong union and civil service environments? This is not mentioned in his blueprint.
Nathan’s blueprint is not complete, comprehensive or detailed to really be a blueprint.
I say all this not so much as a defense of Boks, but a recognition of the problems that a new shelter director will face, whether it be a Winograd trained person or not. You know, I think any prospect needs to be given a playbook of the apparent problems to be encountered before he or she starts, including a walk around of the six shelters, and then the candidate would have to present reasonable proof that he or she had the expertise to solve those problems or to demonstrate those were indeed, not the problems that needed to first be resolved. That is, what is universally accepted as problems are often actually a symptom of problems not recognized.
What Nathan can best do is come in and clearly point out what is broken and tell the City what has to be done. If the city does not give Boks’successor carte blanche to implement those solutions, the new director will fail. Also, he can help find a successor given the slim chance that Villaraigosa will listen to him or anyone.
Winograd is not a silver bullet. The attitude towards volunteers will be difficult to change unless lots of heads roll. How to do that? Getting employees to better take care of the animals when they don’t want to work and oppose any attempt to make that happen is an operations problem. Involving the community when staff does not want to involve themselves is a problem.
Stuckey only managed to get one employee fired in his year on the job. I think it is up to us and any new director to involve to community in getting rid of bad eggs by constantly ragging on them forcing the union and Personnel to build a case against the employee that will force terminations.
I think Mike Bell’s Citizen Oversight Committee is an idea that should have been implemented to assist any GM to get rid of bad employees. I think Villaraigosa needs to empower a Commission he has robbed of any power and are now mostly Boks’ rubber stamps. Atake quit minutes before she would have been fired by Villaraigosa because she complained too much. Riordan was removed as president by Blackman because she was maneuvering to actually get things done in terms of positive change.
I think Butcher definitely has to go and a more change-oriented union head replace her and everyone demand that an obstructionist union head NOT be appointed.
If it is not already the case, a Councilmember needs to act as a liaison between Council and Animal Services directly as opposed to the umbrella public safety department. This should be someone who actually loves animals.
This is my blueprint.