Wednesday, November 21, 2012

At county, lessons about harassment

Training for staff, commissioners meant to reduce insurance cost

Express Staff Writer

    Blaine County commissioners and county staff will participate in one of two sessions next week designed to prevent harassment and promote respect for diversity in the workplace.
    Commissioners Larry Schoen and Angenie McCleary said that the training—set for Monday, Nov. 26, and Wednesday, Nov. 28—is being offered by the county’s liability insurance company.
    Schoen said Idaho Counties Risk Management Program offers the county a 5 percent discount on insurance if enough employees participate in the program.
    “Obviously we don’t want to see harassment in the workplace, but it wasn’t motivated by [instances of harassment],” McCleary said of the training.
    Schoen said the county underwent similar training last year about protocol regarding driving government vehicles. Schoen said that the county had nearly 100 percent compliance—and McCleary added that only two employees did not participate in the training, which was conducted online and was not available in Spanish.
    The training sessions are open to the public, though Schoen said they were publicly noticed only because of the potential for a quorum.
    The training sessions will be followed by employee question-and-answer sessions with the commissioners, in which employees will be able to ask questions about county policies and future agendas.
    “It’s just to give an opportunity for an exchange between the county and its employees,” Schoen said.
    The county commissioners will also hold a regular meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 27, at 9 a.m. at the Blaine County Courthouse in Hailey. Two major issues will be addressed at that meeting: airport modification and senior care.
    The skilled nursing discussion will begin at 10:30 a.m. According to the commissioners’ draft agenda, the board is set to discuss the “next steps” for the process of choosing the best proposal from the three health care providers that presented at a meeting last week.
    A discussion of the alternatives for airport modification will begin at 1:30 p.m. The commissioners are expected to further discuss the possibilities for bringing the current airport site into compliance with certain design standards as mandated by Congress.

Kate Wutz:

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