Homer Alaska - Letters

Story last updated at 9:27 PM on Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Authoritative vs. authoritarian




I am dismayed to hear of the ongoing grievances and issues prevailing from the mismanagement of the Homer Senior Citizen Center. Over the last two years, I have listened to some residents' complaints that have led me to think infringements upon the rights of the residents is occurring frequently. Evidently, some management staff and board members are not adhering to professional standards and work ethic, rather they are imposing personal views, defensive and vindictive reactions ultimately resulting in the neglect of the basic human rights of residents on a regular basis.

The common thread of concern emphasizes no one openly discusses problems nor resolves the issues effectively. Therefore, I question if there are any intelligent well informed people in management and board of directors who have capabilities to understand how to address issues in an ethical, more important, reasonable manner. Making such decisions means all viewpoints to issues need objective consideration, including family members, residents and staff members. How can a reasonable decision be made if staff neglects to listen and communicate with others?

Does anyone understand the difference between authoritative and authoritarian? Allow me to explain: Authoritative people are firm, set clear limits, reason with others, and explain things. Authoritarian people are rigid, punitive and value obedience from others. What type of authority should residents, family and community members expect from managers and board members?

More importantly, who advocates for the residents of the senior citizen home? Should residents and family members be forced to communicate with the state because he or she believes he or she has no choice? Does this type of unprofessional behavior force elderly residents to leave his or her home?

I hope in the near future some intelligent, authoritative people can carefully examine this unacceptable situation to redefine the problem, re-establish quality care and social justice.

Vanessa Bale-Nestor

(Concerned about the well-being and quality of life for elder community members)

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