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Durham Parks Workers Say They Are Overworked, Understaffed

Durham Parks and Recreation
Durham Parks and Recreation

Former and current employees of the Durham Parks and Recreation Department are speaking out against an alleged hostile work environment.

Recreations specialist Kellie McLean spoke at the Durham city council Monday to air some of her grievances. McLean and others claim the department is understaffed, under-resourced and overworked. She says several people have left because of these conditions and it's affecting after-school programs and summer camps.

"Not as many children as the past have been able to enroll in some of our programs because we don't have enough staff there," McLean said.

The workers are asking for the city to commission an independent investigation of the work environment, establish a more robust grievance procedure, and hold problematic managers to account, among other demands.

McLean says she's yet to hear back from Human Resources about a formal letter of complaint delivered to the city manager last month.

Celeste Gracia covers the environment for WUNC. She has been at the station since September 2019 and started off as morning producer.
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