Union members with the Delaware County Sheriff’s Department have passed a vote of no confidence in Delaware County Sheriff John LeClere.
In a letter sent to the Delaware County Board of Supervisors and the media on Monday, AFSCME Council 61 President Danny Homan says the council believes that this vote reflects the severe breakdown of labor relations within the Delaware County Sheriff’s Department.
The resolution states that LeClere failed to provide required annual physical training, which compromised employees’ ability to practice de-escalation when in emergency response teams. The resolution also says LeClere compromised the safety of his investigators, deputies and jailers on multiple occasions by refusing to communicate professionally and not following the mutual bargained agreement when assigning employees. The resolution goes on to say that union members feel LeClere has failed in consistently applying rules and providing the same equipment to all employees. It also cited an ongoing lack of respect toward many of the employees.
The vote passed unanimously, with all 13 members of the AFSCME Local 1835 – made up of deputies, investigators and jailers with the Delaware County Sheriff’s Department – declaring they have no confidence in the leadership of Sheriff LeClere.
“This is a last resort because nothing else has worked,” Homan stated in the letter. “These employees have the right, under Iowa law, to take these actions and I am hopeful that no retaliation will occur.”
LeClere has served as Delaware County Sheriff for nearly twenty years, first elected in November 2000. In response to the vote of no confidence, Sheriff LeClere tells KMCH, “I will make every effort to address the concerns made by AFSCME. I am certain we can make improvements on the issues raised by the union and I have already been working to resolve those issues.”
Delaware County Supervisor Jeff Madlom tells KMCH a meeting is being planned with Sheriff LeClere, the Union’s executive board and a member of the Board of Supervisors to discuss the issue. “We are hopeful we can get to a place where everyone can move forward and feel comfortable.”
photo courtesy of Janelle Tucker/KMCH