This unpopular DA is in charge of the office prosecuting Keith Henson,
a beleaguered administration often accused of incompetence and with
a piss-poor approval rating by its own staff.
82.8% disapproval rating for Trask
Staff lacks confidence in District Attorney
http://districtattorney.virtualave.net/dessun.htm Reprinted from
The Desert Sun
07 May 97
Palm Springs, California
Survey Finds Problems at DA's Office
Employees complain: Document shows workers concerned about morale,
By Kenny Klein
The Desert Sun
Employees of the Riverside County District Attorney's Office cite concerns with morale, distribution of work, office communication and the overall work environment in an internal survey obtained by The Desert Sun. The department concerns were revealed just one week after District Attorney Grover Trask criticized the county Public Defender's Office for poor administration, saying it avoids high-profile cases and bails out on cases at the last minute. SURVEY FOLLOWS CRITICISM:The survey, with 410 of the office's 600 employees responding, is the second one taken during Trasks's term and was released to managers last month during a retreat at Lake Arrowhead. "Absolutely, we would like to see the ratings higher," said Assistant District Attorney Sue Steding, who is based in Indio. "That's why we do surveys - to identify things and ways to do them better." The statements with which more than 20 percent of employees strongly disagreed asked whether the department distributed a fair and reasonable workload; had an adequate computer system; displayed high morale; had managers who created a positive and supportive climate; included staffers in the decision-making process; and had adequate office communication. Employees generally agreed that work gets done without wasted time or effort, that mangers show confidence in the ability of their staffers and that the department demonstrates a commitment to continuous education. SPEAKING FOR RANK AND FILE: But if a score of five on the 1-to-10 satisfaction scale was the midpoint, that means employees disagreed with all but three of the 14 statements, said Daniel Fox, president of the Riverside County Deputy District Attorney's Association, which represents 140 district attorneys. "That's not a very good sign," Fox said. "As far as the rank-and-file is concerned, they are alienated from Mr. Trask, and that's not conducive to an efficient and productive working environment. That's what the survey really shows." "We don't feel we are told what's going on and (that) our input is worth anything. We don't feel we can trust the people we work for, and that's the key problem." He said the survey in general shows communication problems up and down "the management hierarchy." "It's that breakdown in communication that has created the greatest source of problems within the DA's office," Fox said.