Thursday, November 19, 2015

Who Has Abele Placed In Your Neighborhood?

For more than two years, AFSCME and the mental health professionals at the Milwaukee County Behavioral Health Division have been warning about the dangers associated with Chris Abele's plan to privatize the mental health system and close the mental health complex.

The Milwaukee County Board heeded these warnings and wanted to put safeguards into Abele's plan to relocate all the patients into the community.  Because of this and his desire for no accountability or public knowledge, Abele ran to his old buddy, Republican State Representative Joe Sanfelippo.  After slipping Sanfelippo a few bucks, he got his privately owned state rep to push through a law taking the board out of the loop and creating a puppet board to rubber stamp Abele's plans.

Earlier this year, Abele's secrecy and dishonesty started causing problems.  The citizens of Franklin started protesting a group home opening in their community.  They cited concerns about who might be housed in the group home, whether there would be adequate supervision and security and other such things.  Instead of doing the proper education, Abele and the private agency have threatened to sue the City of Franklin to force them to allow the group home.

But it doesn't end there.  As with all things Abele, there is more.  There is always more.

Apparently, in an effort to avoid another fiasco like the one in Franklin, Abele adapted a new modus operandi, namely, lying about what he is doing.

On Wednesday, Milwaukee Alderman Terry Witkowski and State Representative Christine Sinicki held a press conference accusing Abele of opening another group home which will house sex offenders, despite his assurance that this wouldn't happen:
Ald. Terry L. Witkowski on Wednesday accused Milwaukee County officials of covering up a plan to place sex offenders in a community-based residential facility in a quiet south side neighborhood.

The facility at 429 W. Uncas Ave. could open as soon as Friday, with two sex offenders scheduled to move in, said Witkowski, who was joined by more than two dozen neighborhood residents at a news conference in front of the home.

Witkowski said he received assurances from the county's contractor for the facility, Matt Talbot Recovery Service Inc., and its president, Karl Rajani, that no sex offenders would be placed in the home.

But Wednesday, Witkowski said Milwaukee County Department of Health and Human Services Director Hector Colón called him and said two sex offenders would be placed there.

State Rep. Christine Sinicki (D-Milwaukee) joined Witkowski at the news conference and also said she had been misled into believing no sex offenders would be placed in the home.

"This is a residential neighborhood with a park and a lot of young children," Sinicki said.

"We were baldfaced lied to about this."
I find it interesting that the agency that owns this group home is the same one that caused the ruckus in Franklin. It should give one pause to wonder what kind of deal Abele made with this agency.

Abele's staff won't say whether the two sex offenders are on the state's sex offender registry. He then tried to assure people that the two people would not violate the city's law restricting where sex offenders can live.

But given how Abele lied about whether sex offenders were going to be placed in this group home, who would or could believe him on the type of sex offenders he placing there?

These stories should raise a red flag for anyone living in Milwaukee County or in the Southeast region of Wisconsin.

Given Abele's secrecy and outright lying, how can anyone be sure of the safety of their own neighborhood?  Who has Abele placed in your neighborhood without telling you or your local leaders?

Having sat in on some of the meetings with AFSCME to discuss this, I can advise the gentle reader of one thing they can be sure of us.  These aren't isolated incidents.


  1. Abele and Walker - birds of a feather in modus operandi.

  2. Plan to relocate to Milw Metro area soon. l might as well search outside the County, if things don't turn around soon.