August 22 2014
Patrice J. Lee
Worklife at the EPA stinks and it’s not entirely because of environmental regulations or investigations.
As we reported recently, someone has been vandalizing the Denver office of this federal agency by smearing feces (and worse) on walls and in hallways. What began with urine on toilet seats last December has escalated with no end in sight. EPA workers are so turned off that in a couple of cases, they refused to show up to work or are leaving their posts.
Now, we’re learning that things got so out of hand that officials at the EPA called in Homeland Security to patrol their offices in a futile effort to catch the assailant. To this day the misbehavior continues and they are no closer to figuring out who did it.
The Daily Caller reports:
… agency documents obtained by the media shows that bathroom vandalism at the EPA Region 8 office got so bad, they had to call the Department of Homeland Security for help.
The EPA’s Denver office has been hit by about “a dozen suspected instances of restroom shenanigans since late 2013, according to emails, memorandums and incident reports” obtained by Greenwire.
The atmosphere in the Denver office has gotten so bad EPA employees called for heightened security. Deputy Regional Administrator Howard Cantor sent an email out saying “please increase the frequency of patrols.” This was sent out just one day after Cantor sent out a staff memo on the issue.
…Emails obtained by Greenwire from EPA staffers shed more light on the atmosphere within the Denver office.
“One of my employees refused to come into the office today because she is terrified after hearing a story on the train home last night,” an EPA official wrote in an email…
Another official said an employee reported “her house keys were stolen off her desk on Jan. 31st and she had to have her locks changed — she also said that ‘this place is getting strange so I am going to apply for the buy out.”
Homeland Security even got involved and a spokeswoman for the EPA told Greenwire that there are increased patrols at the Denver office.
But emails suggest even the involvement with DHS has not stopped the vandalism.
Either this culprit is brilliant or officials aren’t really taking this episode seriously.
Our government has the most advanced technologies to watch, listen in to and read every aspect of our lives. That’s not a paranoid ranting but statement of the brilliant capabilities we possess.
Why then can’t that brilliance be applied to the EPA? Perhaps a few innocuous security cameras near bathrooms where this behavior occurs will capture the assailant on video and they can be removed from their post or kept out of the buildings if she/he does not belong there.