DC Summer Youth Employment Program

This was one of the last things about my childhood in DC that I was proud of. Mayor Barry’s Summer Youth Employment Program gave many youngsters like myself their first taste of a real job and a real paycheck FICA tax and all. I’ve been extremely proud of my 2 years spent as a summer student aide tuturing elementary kids in Math and English at one of the inner-city elementary schools of the District all while just in middle school myself.

So this morning I wake up to the local news blasting the program that I love.
District administrators calling for heads to roll and what not. Okay how do you mismanage 52 million dollars of a summer youth employment program? WTF? As I remember it and just as the DC Dept. of Employment Services which oversees this program affirmed this morning the program is very structured. There is a limit of participants, a set hourly wage and a predetermined hourly work schedule.

Now I’m no census genius but I can’t imagine that there are that many teens working in this program claiming dependants on their W-4s screwing up the District’s withholding calculations. Now about the kids … some have not been paid for hours worked, some have been paid and have not worked a single minute and even worse … there are instances where former participants [former as in they did not register to participate this year] have received checks for service. I can remember how efficient the program ran for years … and now this is just hard to believe.

I rarely advocate the firing of public officials without knowing more of the factors involved but damn there is a first time for almost everything. Who do we call to the carpet on this one? Mayor Fenty is on his way to Beijing and more than likely will not take action until his return. I’ll keep you posted…

Back in the day it was public knowledge how “Mayor for Life” Barry fought to convince local and major businesses to invest in this program. Now the Ward 8 councilmember, Barry has been quite vocal with his opinions and concerns in this matter. Our local FOX News channel ran several snippites of him leading the protest and looking for answers.

I wish I still had my participant t-shirt with the Red, White and Blue DC logo to wear, I’d draw a black gloved fist on the back to protest.



~ by blkirish on August 7, 2008.

One Response to “DC Summer Youth Employment Program”

  1. The triflingness-ness of bureaucracy aside…I learned something about you from this post. Tutoring…who knew?

    More to love…

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