2. A. Provisions of the Lease and/or Rules and Regulations you have violated: Case Management Plan
1) Actively participate in case management
Anticipating that Charlotte Pfeiffer, Case Manager since approximately 13 June 2016, and April Aiken, Program Supervisor since, according to my visual notes, 30 April 2016, or more or less, would not appreciate my stellar time management, goal-setting, problem-solving, decision-making, and follow-through skills as an opportunity to better focus case management for your clients desperately lacking those life skills, as well as taking a cue from housemates who have also sought case management outside Compass Housing Alliance’s visibly overwhelmed team, Michele Martin at Elizabeth Gregory Home (EGH), a day center for homeless women, has agreed to serve as my case manager as of 21 July 2016:
During my first visit to EGH in early February 2015 after I narrowly survived my Idaho trafficking experiences and returned, on zero budget, through eastern Oregon’s heavy winter snows to Seattle, managing to evade the sex trafficking attempts by a methamphetamine and antipsychotic addict engaged in a severely codependent relationship with his mother, unrecovered from the trauma of a masculine role model who brashly taught his smoke-filled, cheap-motel-dwelling son, “You should be able to walk into any town with just 10 bucks, and by the end of the day, own a house,” Michele offered the pragmatic goal-accomplishing advice for the new-to-me limitations of rooflessness: do one thing per day to get you out of your current situation.
I was appalled.
Just one thing?
With the would-be rapist/drug addict’s $10, I washed a load of laundry, bought new-to-me shoes to replace shoes with holes worn all the way through their soles, a used ceramic mug good for both tea and soup, and a spoon from a thrift shop that increases the budget of the local domestic violence shelter that denied me more than one night’s shelter because, as their director carefully stated, “We don’t do state’s abuses. That’s not part of our Program,” and nearly invested one dollar on two pairs of socks at another shop when the proprietress hesitated to negotiate to 50 cents.
“You don’t have a dollar?”
“Yes. But it’s my last dollar, and I don’t know when I might see another one.”
Another customer in her shop took pity on me, and proffered the 50 cents.
Negotiating two nights in a nonsmoking room free from the would-be rapist on the other side of the same cheap motel courtesy a local police department in the state that employs my ex-husband as a prosecutor cost me no money at all. Not the mansion that I could have bought with the $3.3 million (and counting) the government is willing to spend on the men from my clan, but deeply appreciated all the same. Unfortunately, traffic stalled in both directions on I-84 due to heavy snows, which meant lodging with more drug addicts and ex-convicts on my way back to urbanity seeking access to more resources.
Moving to Seattle in 2009 from a hamlet in far eastern Washington with a blinking red light at the busy intersection joining two rural highways and networking my way, in just three short years, through the “big city” design and education communities to 1) identity and rebranding for the successful campaign of a former member of Seattle School Board elected despite the vast disparity between her own poorly managed budget and the treasure trove of funds available to corporate-backed then-incumbent, now Washington State Charter School Commission Chair Steve Sundquist; 2) receive the only negative feedback on my portfolio from the global design and branding firm that in 2015 failed to communicate to Seattle’s often vocal, but visually uneducated citizenry the value of visual communications in their hastily aborted rebrand of Seattle Public Library, “Maybe you think too much”; and 3) shortly after I finally gave up on finding colleagues in Seattle healthy enough to respect my educated expertise with a living wage, and took a chance on a former mentor who wanted to benefit from my full range of skills across identity, branding, print, illustration, multimedia, and web design and development to better communicate his academic philosophical ideas to a global audience, a Gates Foundation blogger desperately sought my visually educated expertise to work on solving the problem of poverty and other sustainability issues – but only if I was willing to volunteer my expertise to his project – to name just three examples of the caliber of my problem-solving experiences for which I was locked up without due process of law, coming from my background of poverty and multigenerational abuse, I did not achieve these feats of career development by accomplishing just one thing per day.
But from her own experience with homelessness, Michele recognizes the day-to-day necessities of brute survival without a secure roof overhead severely undermine the ability to keep on surviving, let alone accomplishing goals, as I learned from my 2015 adventures through Seattle’s well-intended but conflicting and badly organized poverty industrial complex, as I affectionately refer to the tangled quagmire of governmental and grant-funded quasi-governmental agencies ostensibly designed to provide rudimentary services to America’s impoverished classes.
Michele was also savvy enough to insist on giving me, despite my reluctance to receive excess paper weight when my entire world had slimmed down, from a decade’s worth of work lost to extortion, theft, and trafficking experiences, to what I could carry on my back or in my arms, a fax confirmation report that provides proof of my fee waiver request to the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC), and will help me help LSAC, the organization responsible for administrating the Law School Aptitude Test (LSAT), uphold its stated value “that no person is denied access to law school because of the absolute inability to pay for the LSAT and other essential applicant services,” despite their initial denials from spring 2015.
As I explained to Charlotte, reiterating some of my comments via my 18 July 2016 email to you both, asking to schedule a grievance resolution meeting without further avoidance on the part of Compass Housing Alliance, the landmark $7.73 million settlement negotiated in 2014 by our federal Department of Justice (DOJ) between California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) and LSAC is relevant to my circumstances, as is their brief filed in another Idaho civil rights case, Bell v. Boise, addressing the nationwide specter haunting the dream of democracy, the criminalization of dire poverty, or homelessness.
Far from not actively participating in case management, the inaction, passive aggressive communication style, and under-education of your case and program management staff leave me performing the job of a case manager – minus her paycheck – while juggling my career and educational goals and seeking to “address the issues that have led to this period of homelessness” as described within your Case Management Plan Addendum to our lease agreement.
All while enduring an environment of perpetual foul-mouthed, name-calling, malicious harassment, unfounded accusations of theft, and abuse that frequently accelerates into threats or gestures toward bodily harm.
A “stable housing situation” will not be attained by following Charlotte’s pouty-mouthed, foot-stamping insistence that I meet with her weekly – roundtrip five-hour meeting and public transportation time from Seattle’s remote suburbs to your team’s recent relocation to your Denny Triangle office on Dexter – just so I can watch her spin some more around her passive aggressive volvelle, attempting to blame me for my housemate’s abusive behavior, the abusive behavior of the entire Bundy clan, the abusive behavior of a former Seattle School Board director or her abusive campaign manager, the drug-addled brother of a former Washington state legislator, more recently competing for the position of Commissioner of Public Lands, the abusive behavior of Seattle’s public education activists, or the abusive behavior of your case and program management team.
a) complete an initial case management plan/housing stability plan
At my first and last case management meeting with Charlotte on 22 June 2016, she admitted she had made no effort to review my case file, scheduling our meeting before she was prepared to respect the value of my time, and demonstrated for me little more than her lack of listening, basic math, and time management skills.
My notes from my case management meeting on 02 December 2015 with Hilary Carr, Charlotte’s predecessor by as few as two or as many as four case managers, depending on whether you count interim case managers or individuals with job titles whose abilities seem constrained to jumbling a ring of analogue keys like a sexually frustrated nun on steroids running an orphanage for wayward children, indicate that she would send a list of housing options for which I match their requirements, and I would compare Hilary’s list against the substandard, poverty housing for which I have already applied prior to entering your program.
It is now October 2016.
Even though it is their jobs to know, your staff seem unaware of the current state of Seattle’s skyrocketing rents and the ever-deepening gap between the region’s wealthy and impoverished. Well-captured by Sally Clark, a former Seattle City Council member and current Director of Regional and Community Relations at the University of Washington, in her comments during a panel discussion on homelessness hosted at Antioch University’s local campus on 11 March 2015: “We don’t need 50,000 new affordable housing units in King County, we need 50,000 units in Seattle.”
In November 2015 when I entered your program, I clearly communicated to Hilary that I must focus my time toward educational and career goals, which – happily for anyone interested in solving the problems leading to homelessness, instead of merely earning administrative paychecks on the backs of those problems – coincide with addressing “the issues that have led to this period of homelessness,” as the only way out of the cycle of poverty under capitalism is a job that pays more than a poverty wage. There is not time in any given day, week, or year to follow up every random lead thrown at me by people not intelligent enough to take the time to review the depth and breadth of my job skills, the tasks I have accomplished on nominal budgets, working under life-threatening pressure, or the direction I am choosing for the next chapter of my life.
I distinctly remember Hilary’s ingénue blue eyes widening when I opened my hand-bound journal to the page spread of my in-progress list toward my goals as we discussed what your Case Management Plan Addendum calls “an initial case management plan/housing stability plan,” because her reaction was to say, “Ohh. I’m going to need a longer form.”
If memory serves, I asked something like, “Do you really want to know my daily list toward accomplishing my goals, or just the synopsis version?”
She decided a shorter version would be adequate for your filing system.
I recall signing a form, in addition to reviewing your stack of lease paperwork, which may have been your Initial Case Management Plan/Housing Stability Plan, or Hilary’s synopsis version of my goals, and I am fairly sure I asked for and was promised a copy for my files, now that you had so generously provided a roof overhead, and I could again accumulate the analogue paperwork distributed in abundance by the poverty industrial complex, rather than reducing that physical weight to visual data on my smartphone.
It is now October 2016.
I’ve searched through all of the images I’ve taken with my smartphone.
Perhaps you think I should further distract myself from my educational and career goals by nagging your staff to initiate, maintain, and complete their own things-to-do lists? From my perspective, I do not like being nagged, so I refrain from nagging. While I do not identify as a Christian, I am a big believer in the maxim, “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”
Perhaps the form your current staff seek is buried in the file that Charlotte could not be bothered to read prior to disrespecting my time and educated expertise?
Or perhaps your analogue forms blew out of a cardboard box somewhere along I-5 or Aurora while your staff was in the midst of moving from their former office to their current location?
Perhaps your staff have littered the Cascades with confidential information for literally thousands of abused women fleeing domestic violence from their natal or marital homes?
Regardless, redundantly completing your staff’s analogue paperwork for them falls nowhere near my list of educational and career goals.
May I recommend for Charlotte, April, and any of your subsequent staffers a better communications design than the passive aggressive pattern they are currently following like high-speed hands on an analogue clock? Before threatening eviction to tenants who would be excelling in your program, helping you achieve Compass Housing Alliance’s vision for “a world in which every person lives in a safe, caring community,” if your staff were capable of maintaining boundaries on your abusive tenants, or better still, triage those traumatized clients into more appropriate housing providing wrap-around, onsite psychotherapeutic and case-managed care with healthy role models, first review, and better organize if need be, your predecessors’ paperwork, as well as better familiarize themselves with 21st century technology?
As I review my own accomplishments against your staff’s failures to uphold your own contractual terms as well as municipal, state, and federal law, I nod, sure enough, I am making little checkmarks against my goals as I whack my way patiently through my multipage list.
For example, in my attempts to address the issues that have led to this period of homelessness, the cold case homicide that I reported in May 2014 to Idaho’s mental juridical health authorities, who inappropriately and unprofessionally responded to my trafficking complaint with sneering derision, dismissing multi-jurisdictional criminal reality as my “delusion” because my family told them so, yet was readily confirmed when I called the Pinal County, Arizona, Sheriff’s office – whacking my way through my phone calls once I was finally able to track down a Federal Communications Commission (FCC)-funded flip-phone, where Seattle’s poverty industrial complex seems to have identified the best way to go about solving that problem is to stand on a street corner waving your arms around until some guy with a bunch of phones comes along eager to sign another chunk of data to his government-contracted sales paycheck but there their sales support ends, with overseas telephone operators disinterested in improving the lives of America’s destitute class – and is finally being prosecuted in 2016 by that state’s Maricopa County Attorney. Unfortunately for victims of sexual assault across the southwestern United States, I also notice law enforcement communications between northern and southern Nevada remain so poor that, after the alleged sole perpetrator of that cold case homicide was extradited from Carson City to Arizona on 19 November 2015 and current to this writing, Metro still lists a Jane Doe, or possibly a Mary Stoddard rather than a Christine Marie Martinez, both Marias, as I anticipated in my cover letter of interest in the available position last year as Community Engagement and Communications Specialist with Seattle’s Community Police Commission, and readers following along with my in vivo tests of psychologist Carl Jung’s theory of synchronicity might also note the simultaneity of dates between that date of extradition, my posting of my post-carceral trafficking experiences in Idaho that might help your staff learn to place appropriate boundaries on abusive victims of multigenerational abuse, as well as professional tips for conflict resolution, complete with design analysis of Seattle’s badly designed recycling posters, also relevant to your staff’s passive aggressive decision-making, on that same month and day in 2014, as our 2015 lease signing. More work ahead of me yet before I am persuaded that my first husband, who serially sexually assaulted his wives with increasing brutality, was not involved in one or both or all three or possibly more of the interrelated homicides for the reasons I have already described.
As I communicated to Hilary, through my research, as I better identify problems and solutions, some of my goals will fall off my list, and others will be added.
She nodded as if she understood.
In retrospect, after Hilary also cheered my healthy communication style with, “It sounds like you’re a natural,” maybe I should have done more to better educate your staff sooner instead of keeping my thoughts to myself that I hope this young lady revises her dismissive judgment after she learns about my genealogy. In my experience, there is nothing “natural” or “talented” about the education and hard work of visual literacy. I expect good behavior and hard work to be rewarded, rather than punished, but clearly, my expectations for our contemporary society are again too high.
In Compass Housing Alliance, I have encountered yet another organization that performs precisely the opposite of your written goals, providing still more evidence supporting my theory of the correlation between visual illiteracy and abuse.
And again, my expectations are not higher than basic human dignity.
For another example, as I communicated to Charlotte, attempting to bring her up to speed on my accomplishments between November and June, I set aside my design analysis of LSAC’s global communications plan once I recognized that I had been incarcerated in 2014 with the mass shooter who in January 2015 returned to the community home to my graduate school alma mater, killing three, and critically wounding Seattle Office of Civil Rights lawyer Michael Chin, prioritizing my psychoanalytic design analysis comparing and contrasting Moscow’s 2007 mass shooting incident, which I cited in my graduate thesis work on trauma, against the 2015 event, alongside my journal notes from our time of shared incarceration.
Yes, I understand Moscow’s retiring police chief, who was only an assistant when I attended grad school in his community, is cited in multiple media sources saying the shooter had never been the victim of Idaho’s brand of treatment for “mental illness.” One of the things I learned through my carceral experiences was that my humble little MFA means I’ve likely read more psychoanalytic theory than anyone earning a paycheck associated with Idaho’s mental juridical health system, which means my journal notes are not only much more up-to-date than your case and program management team’s foray into real property management, but also the police chief’s records or the opinions of Idaho’s visually and technologically challenged mental health professionals.
Two very good reasons why young Charlotte is not qualified to set my priorities for me, wouldn’t you agree?
Happily for Washingtonians, Lin Payton, ABA, EPSDT, and Mental Health Program Manager, Clinical Quality and Care Transformation, at Washington State’s Health Care Authority in Olympia, sounds far better educated than Idaho’s Belinda Dalrymple, M. Coun., LPC, NCC, Idaho State University, and recognized my writing skills not as evidence of “mania,” cautioning lockup if my writing “condition” worsened, but excellent qualification for law school. In telephone conversation 03 August 2016 she also acknowledged even Washington is woefully understaffed for psychologists who will accept the low rates negotiated by Medicaid, as well as gaps in the social services workforce statewide. Those similar significant gaps in Idaho’s dysfunctional mental health services were recognized by former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia as “judicially unadministrable” math, may he be blessed with forgiveness and eternal peace, in Armstrong v. Exceptional Child, an Idaho case heard before the Court just 10 days after Moscow’s 2015 mass shooting. Reminiscent of feedback on my MFA thesis from Moscow’s conservation librarian, Ms. Payton described my trauma recovery and recommendations for improving the system as the direction the Evergreen State’s mental health system hopes to achieve, commenting, “It sounds like you are about 10 years ahead of the curve.”
A tiny bit of cognitive dissonance between her lush compliments and shrugging off the state’s competing, badly organized, and visually challenged healthcare websites as “that’s just the way government works,” but at least Lin indicated a readiness to learn better communications. A desire to learn is half the battle, as I learned through my university teaching experiences. Comparatively, so similar to many of Seattle’s public school teachers, your case and program management staff express open hostility to learning, growing, or innovating ways to better and more cost effectively reach their intended audiences or perform their jobs.
Likewise, as I already communicated via email to both you and Charlotte, I met on 30 June 2016 with the first comparatively healthy social worker I have encountered in two – make that three, recalling my sister-in-law’s Oregon paychecks – states, one Amy Salins, MSW, who, in addition to her advanced degree in social work, has received training specifically in trauma, and she readily recognized Unplay, my healthy communications/conflict resolution model based on the structure of trauma, as precisely what she tries to help her clients accomplish:
Significantly, Amy further complimented my professional design research and graphic design skills by saying, “But I’ve never seen a visual model before.”
That is what educated graphic designers do. We correctly identify problems in communications, and devise solutions not previously imagined.
As distinct from Idaho’s definition for “hallucinations.”
I pity you folks whose imaginations are so sapped under capitalism that you cannot envision better solutions to local and global problems.
Your problem is not my problem.
My problem is finding employers, colleagues, or clients healthy enough to respect my educated expertise with a living wage. They don’t have to be 100 percent healthy. They don’t have to be perfect. Just healthy enough.
For another example, in my research and studying for the LSAT and law schools, I learned that the American Bar Association amended its rules in 2014 to allow law schools to accept high-achieving candidates without requiring an LSAT score. Does that mean my nearly completed design analysis of LSAC’s global communications plan was a waste of time? Maybe to you, but to me it just means I will revise it slightly before pitching my experiences and skills directly to really well-branded schools, forgoing the need to fill in their superfluous bubble sheets, as I commented to Charlotte during our interview when she insisted on meeting face-to-face rather than first reviewing Hilary’s case notes or this blog, and still failed to respect my educated perspective or treat me with what I consider to be basic human dignity.
In retrospect, I realize that comment probably terrified someone like young Charlotte, who impresses me as being, like Belinda Dalrymple, yet another victim of No Child Left Behind bipartisan legislation profiting the data-obsessed tech industry, but leaving at least one generation bereft of critical thinking skills thanks to teachers anxious about their paychecks correlated with their students’ test results, teaching rote memorization to fill in those bubble sheets. That generation will live out their lives anxiously checking checkboxes on badly designed forms.
b) meet with your assigned case manager for goal setting, problem solving, decision making, information [missing the Oxford comma] and referrals
During our first and last case management meeting, I watched Charlotte spin around her passive aggressive volvelle, a term I applied to communications design from the French for a device used in pop-up book construction while designing a better solution for conflict resolution than the visual models currently funded by the DOJ for domestic violence intervention or poorly identified by the design team responsible for maintaining Liz Claiborne’s global portfolio of brands, anything available through Idaho’s dysfunctional mental juridical health “experts” statewide, or any model I’ve seen since returning to Washington. While our conversation was much longer than the examples I provide here, this poster offers a brief overview of the structure of her passive aggressive communications style:
If you have access to a 24×36 color printer, you may find analogue media helpful toward better educating and training your staff. Or you may project the poster onto a white wall or a large screen while your staff brainstorm alternative healthy answers to my direct questions for Charlotte. But before your organization financially benefits from my psychoanalytically and visually educated expertise, first we need to renegotiate our contract terms:
By how much would you like to increase your budget? How badly do you want to attain your written goals? Before spending how many more years of your life pursuing their opposite?
Rather than your entire staff dog-piling on a member relatively low in your hierarchy, I recommend an evening of self-reflection for all first: when engaged in conversation, do you wait to actually hear what the other person is saying? Particularly if the person is subordinate to your power? How many repetitions of denial typically occur throughout your organization before the less powerful position is heard, if ever? This much churn at the bottom of any organization generally indicates leadership problems at the top. Are you long overdue for some restructuring of the executive suite? Does the problem stop with your executive director, or continue through your board’s oversight, with your case and program managers no more effective in their listening or conflict resolution skills than a former case manager for the Casey Foundation, despite their corrupt board decisions prompting that devout Christian to early retirement? Harvard Business Review publishes some nice articles on leadership. I frequently retweet them. They will tell you much the same things about leadership and conflict resolution that I am saying here. The major difference is that I have designed a visual model, whereas Harvard’s business leaders will only advise you in writing.
Of course there’s also their ivy league difference.
And our cash differences.
Maybe your $taff will re$pect that authority, despite openly di$re$pecting the authority of Washington law?
Instead of listening to my comment that April’s behavior at the June meeting matched the behavior of dysfunctional faculty and administrators at the University of Idaho when I attended grad school there between 2005–08, behavior that eventually led to a Department of Education investigation of the institution’s noncompliance with Title IX federal education law, not to mention behavior that encourages toxic masculinity that sometimes results in mass shootings, behavior that my state prosecutor ex-husband – then-husband, then-Deputy District Attorney in eastern Oregon – then described as, “You can’t put a whole lot of credence on someone who judges you without ever asking for your version before making up his mind,” and rethinking her behavior, Charlotte’s expression changed to a gleam of triumph when I also noted that Compass Housing Alliance’s delays in service may have cost me the ability to pursue legal remedy for my losses, as of course law has time limits. That facial expression combined with her flinch of revulsion in response to my description of my genealogical connections to the Bundy clan disqualify Charlotte from performing her job description as my case manager.
Because Unplay, my healthy communications model that spins the passive aggressive volvelle in the opposite direction beginning with listening even – or especially – when other perspectives challenge our own, is based on the structure of trauma, Charlotte’s responses revealed to me not just the passive aggressive structure of her communications, but also that she has suffered trauma in her life, and lacks role models for healthy communication. It could be her current daily traumatic experience of working under a passive aggressive supervisor, which inevitably leads to job burnout or compassion fatigue, but a healthy therapist might try starting with whatever occurred in Charlotte’s life before she reached the age of 10. She was able to describe wanting to become a social worker at that tender age, but became inarticulate when I asked what early childhood exposure to social work led to her career decision.
Regardless, I am not offering to sacrifice my life goals to voluntarily play mother-substitute-object for Charlotte or any of your other staff members or clients while they transfer their thinly repressed rage onto the nearest economically vulnerable middle-aged woman.
Subsequent to our one-on-one conversation wherein she abused her position of undereducated authority over me, Charlotte referred me to Washington State Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) and Housing and Employment Needs (HEN) funding for regional ORCA transportation, as Compass Housing Alliance tries to squirm out of Hilary’s verbally promised microscopic budget of six bus passes per week, which communicates to me Charlotte’s lack of knowledge of Washington’s and King County’s programmatic social services, as neither the state department nor Catholic Community Services distribute transportation budgets to impoverished citizens who are better qualified to do the jobs of their case managers than members of their passive aggressive case and program management teams. Those funds are reserved for disabled citizens.
Worse, despite my asking, between November 2015 to the current day, for more cost-effective transportation to empower trafficking survivors to get back on our feet and accomplish our brute survival needs, access to healthcare, educational, and professional goals, none of your staff seem to be aware that King County Metro lists your own organization as responsible for disbursing ORCA Lift, their well-intended but poverty-uneducated program for low income residents that unfortunately does not begin from the far margins of poverty, or zero income residents, all the more essential for transportation between Seattle’s suburbs and resources downtown after completion of the light rail tunnel stations at the University of Washington and in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, when the bus routes reduced to encourage light rail travel.
Furthermore, Hilary revised her initial telephone offer from, “Maybe we could help with move-in costs,” to handing me a bill for your $75 move-in costs, and vaguely suggesting that the neighborhood Helpline distributes toilet paper in quantities somewhat approximate to biological function in the normal adult human being. They do not. In real life, blue-haired old ladies carefully squint into their computer screens, painstakingly learning data entry skills to document distribution of. One. Roll. Of. Toilet. Paper. Per. Month. Once again, the combined efforts of the entire United States Congress have failed to comprehend that what goes in, must come out, in their food stamp budget-making decisions.
Why is it always a toilet paper problem in this country?
Further, both Hilary and Charlotte were not knowledgable about DOJ funds distributed to Seattle in September 2015 to provide assistance to trafficking victims shortly before I joined your program. Worse, they express open hostility at the notion of better learning how to do their jobs. Fay Sitaras, Supervisor at DSHS, responded much more intelligently than Compass Housing Alliance’s team to my questions in July 2016 by saying, “It sounds like you probably know better than me.” Both Fay or Dawn Parks, whose contact information you should have in my file from her verification of my lack of income that your staff redundantly required shortly after the first of the year, confirming information I had already communicated to both your staff not two months earlier and DSHS, should be able to better educate your staff about the services their department provides without your team demanding further unpaid one-to-one tutoring from me. Or threatening me with eviction when I refuse still more trafficking opportunities.
No end of trafficking opportunities in this world today.
Worst of all, during my initial interviews with Hilary, I broached the topic during my house screening interview, again at lease signing, and still again during follow up case management meetings during which I verbally described one-to-one my accomplishments toward attaining reconnection with ordinary life, and via email, but, while she initially seemed supportive of service animals in your group transitional home environment and indicated the possibility of funding for transportation or petrol to retrieve my cat, Hilary proved unknowledgeable or reluctant to follow through in that area as well.
After nearly a decade of unpaid professional development coinciding with the start of the Great Recession, I have become very particular about how and where and for whom I volunteer my time.
Better communications design: when your staff are not as well educated in their chosen field as your clients – and this recommendation holds true for the passive aggressive case manager and director of the Salvation Army’s Pike Street women’s shelter as well – they need to behave like assistants toward your clients rather than tyrannical bosses. Anytime they get to an “I don’t know” in their knowledge of navigating Seattle’s poverty industrial complex – go find out. Learn. Grow. Innovate your business plan with 21st century technology.
c) work and progress on your planned goals through meeting and discussion with your case manager
Meetings and discussion with Compass Housing Alliance’s case and program management team hinder my progress toward my planned goals, in addition to actively causing me psychological harm, replicating as they do the passive aggressive communications style found in adverse family environments to rationalize one housemate’s near-daily foul-mouthed malicious harassment and periodic threats of physical harm.
d) participate with other support services requirements (i.e. employment, education, etc):
See my responses to 2.A.1) through c) above. It might be helpful for you to remind your undereducated staff of the expertise shared by human resources professionals worldwide that job-seeking is, in itself, a full-time job, since Charlotte, like my immediate family, is too passive aggressive to respect my educated expertise.
e) provide documentation of activities and accomplishments
Happily for your team, as I communicated to Charlotte, I already solve your valid concerns keeping tabs on my efforts, and welcome your review of the depth of my job skills as demonstrated here on WordPress, the breadth of my job skills as demonstrated on my Vimeo channel and Cargo Collective portfolio, welcome questions in comments below giving me the opportunity to better clarify anything I write or visually communicate that your team does not understand, and if you would like more immediate peek into my daily research and job networking activities, or to further consider innovative solutions to Seattle’s poverty problem, you’re welcome to return my follow on Twitter – all links readily available from my Gmail account via our unproductive chains of email communications or clicking on the respective identities of those social media platforms from the right column on this blog.
If Compass Housing Alliance is not happy with the speed of my progress, that should tell you that I need either 1) more time, or 2) access to more resources, not less.
B. Specific Incident(s): You were not present at the House Meeting on 7/21 at 9:30 AM. You did not call to explain your absence.
Your staff are so right. I did not attend the House Meeting that Charlotte unilaterally dictated as mandatory by creeping through the house sometime between 9:00 and 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday, 19 July 2016, and taping a notice to the door frame of my unit, a notice I did not receive until 10:30 p.m. that night, when I finished watching the filmic version of the psychology research classic Stanford Prison Experiment, providing her clients less than 48 hours’ notice to attend a “mandatory” meeting, an unreasonable requirement directly conflicting with my educational and professional goals.
You see how easy it is for me to acknowledge when your staff are right?
An excellent film, much better composed and thus more educational, following the creative writing maxim, show me, don’t tell me, than paying undergraduate tuition for a telecourse watching Dr. Zimbardo talk at the camera about his results. Maybe a good learning exercise for your entire staff? To prompt self-reflective discussion after watching the film, maybe ask with which characters your staff members most identify?
From my perspective, your staff are behaving like petty thugs, their behavior similar to the behavior of the Stanford students selected to take on the role of prison guards. I could be wrong, but from my deep knowledge of human psychology, I’m betting they will probably better identify with the victim position of the students assigned prisoner status.
After watching the film, and judging from my communications drawing your attention to the abusive behavior of your staff, can you guess which character with whom I most identify?
Which character most resonates with you?
Interesting to reconsider a psychology experiment I first learned in college from the perspective of my post-graduate professional development experiences. Contrasting their two-week mock prison in the basement offices of a building in Palo Alto, shut down after just six days, against my incarceration in the real deal for an entire month in Idaho, I’m thinking those weak-willed Stanford men might be ready to inject some low class deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) into the deeper end of their campus pool. With Stanford’s 2016 commencement pausing in recognition of the victims of the massacre in Orlando and its university president stepping down in search of better educational models for conflict resolution than either gun violence or sexual assault, that makes my education and experiences all the more relevant to their campus goals. Happily for President Hennessy’s successor and campus leaders across this nation, I already wrote that book in 2008. I called it my MFA thesis, titled it Wild Child, and exhibited my successfully defended argument in Moscow and Chicago that year.
In comparing notes with three of my other housemates, none of them attended the July house meeting either. Yet none of them received a 10-Day Notice to Comply or Vacate Unit, confirming my earlier assessment of your staff’s discriminatory practices enforcing our lease agreement and prioritizing their abusive negotiation skills of force or coercion over mutual respect and safety. I did not compare notes with a fourth housemate, whom I have rarely seen. As I understand the situation from hearing multiple perspectives, including her own, after suffering rampaging threats of bodily harm from our fifth housemate, Selam* has decided her own family’s household, however controlling or abusive, leading to her homelessness, is not as abusive as the hostile environment maintained by Compass Housing Alliance. Further, Angie* suspects she may have returned to Ethiopia for her father’s year-delayed funeral, making your 10-Day Notice to Comply or Vacate Unit attached to her door all the more grossly lacking in compassion for the challenges of global family.
I also did not compare notes with our fifth housemate, Delores,* as she began raging at me from my first morning at Restful Peace Cottage, and that behavior remains unchecked by your staff, despite multiple grievances filed by numerous housemates prior to my arrival and current as of this writing.
Since your staff only listen to the loudest voice in the room and uphold her abusive behavior, there’s really no reason to disrespect the time and work and educational priorities of the entire house by calling house meetings to accomplish nothing more than providing a larger audience for her rampaging martyr narrative. Long before your staff schedule their house meetings, the rest of us are already well-versed in her martyr narrative. She doesn’t need your help amplifying it. She does that perfectly well on her own. Better communications design: regular, at least weekly appointments for Delores to rage at a therapist better educated in trauma than your case, program, and clinical staff, in hopes that she will recover from her earlier traumatic experiences and acquire healthier communication skills.
While Charlotte’s “truth” technically matches my truth that I did not call her to communicate my previously scheduled conflicts, I did email to you both, inviting a grievance resolution meeting, indicating my availability throughout the upcoming week. A screenshot of my email zooming in on my scheduling conflict prior to her last-minute command to appear:
I know that Charlotte received my email communicating my unavailability on Thursday, because even prior to posting her last-minute, late-night house meeting notices, she responded to it, following the same grievance resolution avoidance tactic previously used by Jennifer Pargas, Program Manager before my arrival in November and until 22 April 2016, according to rumors spread by another housemate, with no official communications from Compass of that staff turnover. Similar to Jenn, Charlotte repeats the same narcissistic avoidance tactic she used in our first and last case management meeting, insisting that Compass Housing Alliance’s failures to follow your own grievance procedure prior to her case management assignment meant I needed to start all over again from the bottom of your staff hierarchy, merely sending a copy of your form and policy that your staff have historically failed to follow, when I had already communicated the grievance to your level of executive attention.
Earlier, leaving a voicemail for temporary case manager “At” Asefa to explain my prior scheduling conflict with April’s first May house meeting schedule only resulted in April rescheduling the meeting to a time that remained in conflict with my usual Thursday meetings downtown, complete with April’s further threats jeopardizing the roof overhead if I did not sacrifice my one-to-one meeting scheduled with Antioch University faculty between their spring and summer quarters to attend the first “monthly” house meeting that your staff had even attempted to schedule to uphold our lease terms since my arrival in November, without so much as a courtesy return call, leading to my assessment that your staff actively hinder my career and educational goals while demanding greater expectations of me than they hold for themselves:
Jenn’s avoidance of conflict resolution via her door postings dated 14 January 2016, following a 911 call that Linda* placed on 11 January 2016 in response to Delores’s rampaging threats of bodily harm, was all the more tragicomic, as your then-Program Manager threatened all of us with eviction for one housemate’s criminal behavior, in a stroke reminiscent of passive aggressive or incompetent parents unprepared to role model healthy conflict resolution for their offspring, and further referred me to grievance forms and policy that either she or Delores had previously removed from the house, prohibiting written grievance filing by any means other than email:
Only my second introduction to Jenn’s praxis of passive aggressive program mismanagement, where she had successfully delayed beyond the holidays with assisting with the return of my service animal from Idaho, instead delivered prepackaged “gifts” of L’Eggs pantyhose, Stovetop stuffing mix, and supermarket pre-roasted chickens that eventually withered and shriveled until I added them to your curbside compost in lieu of rotted meat stinking up our shared refrigerator, I felt afraid of nowhere to turn within your organization supporting criminally abusive behavior and baffled by her remarks of providing “multiple trainings and mediations.”
That may sound ungrateful for generous donations from your perspective, but if your case and program management staff could be bothered to get to know your clients, they might soon realize the household composition: 1) foodie, not a gourmet chef by a long stretch, but I do not eat prepackaged corporate “food” product for both aesthetic and health reasons, 2) a recent immigrant from Ethiopia who prepares Ethiopian food and avoids American food for probably much my same reasons, 3) an Ethiopian American who had by then long since fled Delores’s abusive rampages, 4) a white housemate who struggles with obesity and depression, and who also fled Delores’s abusive rampages throughout the holidays, couch-surfing or cat-sitting with friends or relatives whenever possible, 5) further dietary restrictions for health reasons and a converting Jew already so kosher she prepares her food with sterile dishes and utensils separate from the shared household cooking tools, and finally 6) Delores seems to prefer her meat charred beyond recognition of the original animal.
As I expressed to Jenn, “I haven’t worn pantyhose in some 25 years, and I do not foresee a future where I will ever need L’Eggs.”
“Well, we can’t help what our funders and donors give us,” she whined grudgingly, and delayed my request for gas card to return my service animal until “maybe January.”
Your program manager doesn’t know how to communicate to your external audience the very real needs of your internal clients, choosing instead to compost your budget-?
Had she considered asking?
From my perspective, by then Delores had, of course, avoided attending two mediation sessions that Hilary tried to schedule, as I predicted by observing her behavior stomping around her passive – though mostly aggressive – volvelle. Further, the long-running, unresolved household conflicts that I observed during my housemate screening interview attended by Delores and Angie speak of little more than your staff’s incompetencies with training for identifying criminally abusive communication or conflict mediation.
As a result of Jenn’s memo, Angie, who’s out-stayed the duration of your “program” for many months due to the lack of available permanent subsidized housing even for King County’s disabled citizens, wailed to me, “But they haven’t taught me healthy communication! I want training!”
Yenesulesh,* my housemate newly immigrated from Ethiopia, who had not been present at the house during Delores’s multi-day rampages that precipitated Linda’s 911 call, came to me for translation assistance of your staff’s abusive communication, frantic with their post-holiday, mid-winter threat of eviction.
As I suggested to Charlotte during our first and last case management meeting, if the graphic design of your internal paperwork is important to her, then she could 1) take better notes during one-to-one meetings rather than disrespecting my meatspace time, and 2) cut and paste from my emails or 3) social media for updates on my educational and career goals and accomplishments if a uniform resource locator (URL) will not suffice. If my description of the grievance extends longer than your half-page form allows because your staff have allowed this criminal behavior to continue for far longer than reasonable if you hope to achieve your vision for safe communal living, then it is more appropriate for her to type: “Please see attached” rather than pull anything I communicate out of context.
Charlotte responded by asking me to send her an email attaching a screenshot of my blog so she could avoid one click away access to the knowledge to bring herself up to speed on my experiences and better educate herself from my accomplishments, sounding every bit as dysfunctional as Marcellus Turner’s Mixing Chamber staff who, all last year, raged at me that I could not have open on the state-funded job resource computers both a Word file writing job application cover letters and a web browser window to the website of any given firm or government agency to which I was applying, before his Regional Manager of Seattle’s downtown public library decided that interaction or UX design jobs are inappropriate for the state-funded job resource computers, but, well, maybe, it might be okay with her staff if I viewed a screenshot of a potential employer’s website while typing my job application cover letter to one Seattle-based, global technology firm.
One. Click. Away.
Better communications design: if your staff members put half as much energy into simply resolving conflict as they currently churn around their passive aggressive volvelles avoiding resolution and blaming their clients for their own bad behaviors, Compass Housing Alliance might well have solved King County’s homelessness problem for the Gates or Allen Foundations five years ago, obviating the need for Mayor Ed Murray to call for federal emergency funds. Instead, it looks like you are firmly committed to exacerbating the problem over the next 20 years.
Better communications design: teach your staff how to Unplay their Shame and Blame Game. Role model healthy communications for them.
If your staff are not oral/aural learners and also refuse read/write learning, I can design a more kinetic version of Unplay for their learning enjoyment. Something like Twister for your staff to hop around four little dots as they learn the difference between passive aggressive communications based on the structure of trauma and healthy communications by resolving their internal conflicts and listening to perspectives outside their own, instead of defining passive aggressive communications as anyone whose perspective disagrees with their own. Would you like to quadruple your current budget? What’s your timeframe? Goals?