Letters to the Editor- ——Writer very proud of library——

Dear Editor;
I’m writing in response to the “Where is Your Librarian” letter that was published in your April 26, 2013 edition.
As a retired licensed counselor, I have a certain amount of insight into human nature. I have yet to meet an employee who has been separated from their position that was willing to admit any wrongdoing on their part. Regardless of the employer’s official position on a termination, there is nearly always a valid reason for the action.
I also know, as someone who spent several decades in the workforce, that the only side of this story we will hear is that of Ms. Clark. Her employee file is confidential so the library’s administration will not be sharing those details publicly.
I happen to be a patron of the Surrey Township Public Library and I’ve been incredibly thrilled with the changes that have gone on there in the last few years. The atmosphere at the library has completely changed. It is now a welcoming and vibrant place in our community. I’ve yet to visit when there haven’t been a good number of people making use of this fabulous resource. The staff is friendly and always willing to go the extra mile to meet any needs that I may have and the programs they are developing are wonderful. I’m particularly excited to see that the library will be the site of Farwell’s first community garden this year!
The Library has expanded my ability to gain access to information a hundredfold. Without ever leaving my home I am able to log on to the Library’s website and borrow books from libraries all across the state. I can learn a new language, download eBooks and audio books to enjoy on my iPad or access databases for research.
Even though I use the internet from home, I’ve noticed that the library has also expanded their number of computers for the public to use. There used to be only three or four computers where there are now a couple of dozen. When I inquired about where the new computers came from I was told that the library received a grant for technology to create a computer lab. I don’t know if this is the same grant that Ms. Clark spoke about but it is evidence that the library makes use of grant funding none the less.
Ms. Clark also spoke about being taken to dinner on several occasions. I was curious about the reason for this so I called the library for an explanation. I was told that once a year, on National Library Worker Appreciation Day, the library’s board recognizes the staff for all their hard work by treating them to an awards dinner. I asked if Ms. Clark had attended all of the awards dinners and was told that she had. Several thoughts and questions came to mind upon hearing this. If Ms. Clark had any concerns about who was paying for her meal why did she not express them prior to her termination? If she honestly believed, as she has insinuated, that these awards dinners were not justifiable, why would she attend on a regular basis?
Personally, I find it refreshing to hear of employers who value their workers and wish to reward and recognize them. And this leads me back to wondering why an employer who has shown that they place great store in the people who conduct their business would just simply terminate one without just cause. I believe that there is much more to the story of Ms. Clark’s termination than she is willing to share.
From all that I’ve seen with my own eyes coupled with a lifetime of experience in the working world, I can only conclude that Ms. Clark’s letter is nothing more than the sour grapes of an ex-employee. I, for one, am very proud of what my library has become and will continue to use it and support it long into the future.
Jackie Warren
Farwell housewife

2 Responses to Letters to the Editor- ——Writer very proud of library——

  1. paperboy Reply

    May 4, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    Dear Mrs. Warren a.k.a. “Farwell Housewife”. I find it extremely interesting that nowhere in your letter do you admit exactly who you are or your connection to this entire affair. For anyone else reading this, Mrs. Warren is the biological sister of Ms. Jean Gaskill, The director of Surrey Public Twp. library. Therefor as a former student of Psychology at M.M.C.C. and having a fair amount of experience with human behavior myself, I contend that her entire letter is nothing more than biased rhetoric. Also, someone who claims to be a retired licensed counselor should have the common sense not to attempt to judge a persons behavior or claim to have any insights concerning their reasoning especially when they’ve had maybe a grand total of two conversations with that person.

    Mrs. Warren also claims that the library has expanded her access to information and books from across the whole state. What you may not realize is that virtually EVERY SINGLE library in the state is connected to a system called MeLCat. This gives access to EVERY SINGLE BOOK, from EVERY library in the state to EVERYONE with a library card from any one of Michigan’s libraries connected to the system. Which as I stated, is virtually ALL OF THEM! So, this is nothing special. She also says she finds it refreshing to hear of an employer who values, rewards, and recognizes them. By how exactly I am wondering? By hiring friends and family at higher than average wages for no justifiable reasons and then firing those who question you about not only that but potential misappropriation of other funds as well?

    Nice try Jackie, but I don’t believe you’re fooling anyone.

    Charles Rich
    Route Delivery Driver
    (Summer Clark’s boyfriend b.t.w.)

  2. Kim Clark Reply

    May 5, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    Dear Mrs. Warren,
    I am Summer Clark’s mother, Kim. Funny how people come out of the woodwork and make judgements when they do not even know the facts. Just because you are a “retired licensed counselor” does not mean anything. Summer made the library what it is today, she should be given the credit for that. She is a wonderful person, honest to a fault, and fun. She was the one who made the library a place the kids wanted to hang out so much so they had to put an age limit without parents sign up. The patrons loved Summer as I do. So seeing what you said about her without even knowing her was wrong. Summer’s point in all this was the way the library is being managed. All employee’s should be treated equal, such as leaving without clocking out, coming and going as they please, taking as many cigarette breaks as they see fit, bringing their kids/grand-kids to work as long as they see fit then taking said kid/grand-kid to sitter/school taking an hour to do so. But all of a sudden Summer had to clock in and out and when she had no other choice she brought her baby in, thinking its OK since other did it. Being as smart as you implied in your letter you must know were I am going here. That’s all Summer wanted and Ms. Gaskill wonders why she wants to leave. Also hiring her friend when there was not a job opening at a higher rate of pay why? Because she has contacts? So, are we forgetting this is Farwell what contacts do you need. Now for what I think about the salary of Ms. Gaskill $46,000 really!! Mt. Pleasant’s library Director position was open starting at $60,000 that big library no wonder the library hardly has any books or movies, someone needs to buy more books and magazine. The magazine section is pitiful go to the Harrison library see how big there’s is. Farwell needs an actual magazine rack/shelves. I visit many libraries across this country and our library needs help in the buying department, I know if that was part of Summer’s job she would have filled that library up. I know maybe one of the board members should run the library for free so we can get some books in there. I may not be as smart as you Mrs. Warren but I think the library should actually have reading material in them so you won’t have to always use Mel-Cat. Our computers there are horribly slow and frustrating maybe Ms. Gaskill should have gotten less of them but better computers. I go in there and many times only a few people are using them. So Mrs. Warren how’s that for “sour grapes”?

    Your Truly,
    Kim Clark
    Dissatisfied Surrey Township Public Library Patron

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