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Who Will Stop This? 

DWP commissioners respond to crisis of mistreated workers

Thursday, Jul 22 2004

We asked the Board of Commissioners of the Department of Water and Power about discrimination at the DWP and the city attorney’s use of secret settlements in racial- and sexual-harassment lawsuits by employees.


Board President Dominick Rubalcava, attorney, Main Street Law Office: “My blood would freeze if I thought I was getting legal advice [on confidential settlements] that is not consistent with the laws of this state.”

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Commissioner Gerard McCallum II, pastor of economic development for Forum Enterprises Inc.: “Sometimes a settlement is a good way to get some money instead of getting some social change. It has been tainted over the years. Now you have so many suits, threatening suits, and half the time you settle because it is too expensive even if you are right.”

Commissioner Silvia Saucedo, attorney: “I think what we should do is take a look at all these departments and figure out where [discrimination complaints] are coming from. Is it one supervisor? What level? And to try to find out what the common thread is and then take appropriate action. Investigate that.”

Commissioner Annie Cho, president of Jin Woo Communication Group: “Things can always get better.”

Commissioner Sid Stolpher did not return seven calls over the course of five days seeking his comments.

Reach the writer at cpelisek@laweekly.com

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