Larson Announces First Appointment as Milwaukee County Executive
Says he will appoint Jonette Arms Director of Department on Aging
MILWAUKEE – Senator Chris Larson, a candidate for Milwaukee County Executive, said Tuesday he will appoint Jonette N. Arms to be the head of the County’s Department on Aging after he is elected on April 5. Larson held a press conference
Tuesday to draw attention to the current county executive’s troubling pattern of racial discrimination towards County employees, including his treatment towards Arms. Larson was joined by Fred Royal, president of NAACP and Stephanie Sue Stein, former head of the Milwaukee County Department on Aging.
Stephanie Sue Stein made the following remarks:
“When I retired last June, I strongly recommended Ms. Arms as a qualified successor and 14 of the 16 Commissioners of the Milwaukee County Commission on Aging signed a letter requesting her appointment as Director.”
Fred Royal, president of NAACP made the following remarks:
“Chris Abele has a pattern of discriminatory employment practices as county executive. He has failed to retain any African Americans as department heads in his administration and two lawsuits have been filed against him for racial discrimination.
“Despite Ms. Arm’s experience, County Exec. Abele has repeatedly undermined and ignored her authority as interim director and prohibited from speaking to the press, something that the previous Director routinely did as part of her job.”
Senator Larson made the following statement:
“Jonette Arms is highly qualified to be the permanent Director of the Department on Aging, and when I am elected Milwaukee County Executive, I will appoint her as Director.
“Ms. Arms has bipartisan support backing her permanent appointment. Supervisor Taylor, a Republican, has publicly called for Abele to permanently hire her. Taylor has also stated his concerns that Abele’s intentional uncertainty within the Department will adversely affect services for our senior neighbors.”
I’m troubled by Abele’s has a pattern of discriminatory employment practices that stretch back to 2011, when his administration participated in a phony “sting” operation against Johnny Thomas, a candidate for Milwaukee Comptroller who was later acquitted.
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