Wednesday, June 24, 2015

An Open Letter To Governor Bruce Rauner

Dear Governor Rauner,

Let me introduce myself, my name is Patrick pronounced with the Atrick, (sorry I'm a sucker for Digital Underground). Anyway there's a few things that we need to discuss.

I've been a loyal, hard working State of Illinois employee for 21 years.  I make a middle class salary that supports my wife and two daughters. You claim that you are for the middle class, but recent behavior on your part suggests that you are ready to lay off or lock out 30,000 plus middle class workers and I really wonder why that is?

I mentioned that I've been a loyal employee, but I should probably expand on that.  I'm a child abuse investigator for DCFS.  I've routinely seen things that few people have the stomach for and fewer still have the emotional capability to handle.  Horrible things Governor, death, broken bones, sexual assault. Things that people don't want to admit exist, much less see and investigate.

I'm not pretending that I have the toughest job in the state. I know that all State employees have their difficult days.  People don't realize that we work for children, elderly, poor, and disabled people.  We protect your highways through the State Police and we build your highways through the DoT.

You, Governor Rauner have vilified State Employees. You routinely belittle what we do with hare brained schemes like trying to hire back retirees to replace us. You demean our dedication and service to the public. We're not the problem, sir.

I'm sure you know, sir, that all State Employee's salary combined makes up 7 % of the State of Illinois budget. 7% of a 31 billion dollar operating budget is 2.17 billion.  Your personal wealth is rumored to be over a billion dollars perhaps as much as the 2.17 that all state employees make.

You have lost your ability to empathize with common people. You said publicly that you would debate anyone any time regarding your economic plan. As evidenced by your dodging debate with Representative Mike Smiddy you've shown you're all hat and no cattle with regards to challenging people to debate.

Maybe it was an empty promise or maybe you felt that Smiddy would be polished enough to clean your clock.  So here's the thing, I will challenge you to a debate. I'm a common man. I have a mortgage and debts and I make a middle class wage. I'm no orator and I'm no politician.  I will give you the respect your office deserves if you will give me the common decency my service deserves.

My job is difficult but I love it.  All of us love it. We love working for the people of the State of Illinois.  We're not greedy, we're not lazy, we're not dumb. We love our state.  We love serving the people. I'd love to have this debate in person and I hope you take me up on my offer.


Patrick Perion AKA Quad City Pat

1 comment:

  1. As a Retired DCFS State employee, I stand behind QuadCityPat's letter/challenge & our Union 100%. People & Governor Bruce Rauner seem to lack the clear vision of the role & responsibility of a front-line State Worker.
    Yesterday I received a call from the State of Illinois asking me that should my Union brothers & sisters strike on July 1st would I be willing to return to my job as a Contract Worker for a short period of time. Oh my!! My head quickly started to spin & I needed to give an answer immediately. First, let me say I went into my job a couple of decades ago because I, like my working brothers & sisters, felt a commitment to the well-being of children & families. Towards the end of my career it became increasingly difficult to focus on & provide real assistance to the people I serviced because of our State Government's implemented policies & demands. It became a game of putting fires out with a water hose connected to a very small supply of water. Like many of my experienced co-workers, we felt defeated before we entered our offices each morning and often at the expense of our own families. But, let me share that since retiring, one of my previous mothers found me on Facebook & thanked me for making a difference in her life. Her first 4 children were taken and later adopted but she shared that because I had kept telling her that she can make the positive changes in her life there is always hope of a second chance. Years later she did & now has 2 more children & an admirable career job. I also had lunch yesterday with one of my previous "youth's of the system" (now in her 30's & still calls me "mom") & her new family. Even while typing this, another youth who grew up in the system found me on Facebook and " messaged" me 3 times.
    These relationships are priceless.
    I now hold in my hands a double-edged sword. I am committed to the people and my coworkers. If needed, I will go back briefly (even though I never wanted to "work" again) for the sack of the children & families & to provide supportive emergency fire preventing services for my coworkers so they can fight for their rights to be respected in all areas & not have to return to the impossible task of putting all the pieces of their job back in semi working order. I pray you, Mr Governor, don't lose sight of the fact that we & you service people. People who are the future of our State & country. And that is a priceless responsibility.
    I don't want to be put in the position that I need to cross a strike line & swing the double edge sword but I will for my coworkers & the children. I hope you're fool enough to give consideration to QuadCityPat's challenge. People need a clear picture.