Suffredin- For a Better Cook County  
 

Accountability
Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions

 

   
 
   
   
 
   
     
  Office phone numbers:  
   
 
 

Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

   
 

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.

   
  Cook County is the second most populous county in the nation. It is the 19th largest government in the U.S.
   
     
     
     



Hamlet on the bench

Tuesday, February 28, 2006
Chicago Tribune

U.S. District Judge John Nordberg is unwilling to force improvements at the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center. He should act now or get out of the way and let a more decisive, involved judge take this case.

Nordberg has presided for three years over an agreement reached in court to improve conditions at the center. The American Civil Liberties Union, which represents youths at the center, has struggled for those three years to get county officials to comply with the terms of that agreement. The county hasn't even come close.

And yet Nordberg is still urging both sides to try to work out their differences.

Judge, the problem isn't working out an agreement. We supposedly got there three years ago. The problem is that Cook County is incapable of abiding by one.

Nordberg said as much himself in court last week. The detention center's superintendent, Jerry Robinson, has "flunked his test," the judge said. "Essentially, not much of anything really has been accomplished."

Yes! That's the point!

The center remains a mess. Numerous independent experts have found that. An eval uation ordered by Cook County Board President John Stroger himself found that kids live in dangerous, unhealthy, filthy conditions.

But Stroger has larded the place with incompetent, politically connected minions, and he still stands by them.

Are the minions worried about fixing the place? Here's what they're thinking about: Last week employees were invited to receive training credit for attending a two-hour seminar titled, "Menopause in the workplace."

The detention center will not change until incompetent personnel are cleared out. Last fall, the ACLU asked Nordberg to appoint an independent manager to step in and fix things. But Nordberg has stalled on that request for months.

And while Nordberg chastised the superintendent of the detention center, he heaped undeserved praise on two court-appointed monitors who are supposed to keep an eye on progress there. While the monitors counted the salad forks these last three years, the detention center wallowe d in chaos. Neither monitor has bothered to spend much time talking to kids or lower level staffers to get a sense of how the place is run.

And yet Nordberg last week suggested those two monitors should be more involved in helping to work out an agreement, come up with a compliance plan and enforce it. What a mistake.

The parties in the case will appear before Nordberg one more time, on Thursday, before he takes off for six weeks to vacation in California. He'll be taking more extended time off this year to hit other destinations. Nordberg retired a decade ago, but works on "senior status," which basically means he can come and go as he likes.

There are 450 kids at the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center on any given day, and they don't have the luxury of a six-week California vacation.

Judge, name an independent monitor on Thursday. If you're not prepared to do that, give the case to another judge who will devote the time and make the deci sions to fix this problem now. You have become part of the problem.



Recent Headlines

The unfulfilled promise of Roseland's medical district
Monday, September 29, 2014
Crain's Chicago Business

Cook County probation department's gun cases fall apart
Friday, September 26, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Land bank wants Fannie, Freddie to donate homes
Thursday, September 25, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Old Cook County Hospital: Support for Museum at Site but Not Housing
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
DNAinfo

Fate of Cook County Hospital to Be Decided in Coming Weeks
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Curbed

Cook County seeking public input on former hospital site
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Chicago Tribune

Clout-heavy assistant to Sheriff Dart can't keep track of time
Sunday, September 21, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Harvey To Vote On Police Department Audit By Cook County Sheriff
Sunday, September 21, 2014
CBS Chicago

Pension crisis hits Cook County suburbs too
Saturday, September 20, 2014
Daily Southtown

Judicial system set to explore data-sharing
Friday, September 19, 2014
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

Cook County Begins 24-Hour Tracking of Juvenile Offenders
Friday, September 19, 2014
CSNChicago.com

Full House As Glenview Trustees, County, Talk Housing Vouchers
Friday, September 19, 2014
Journal Online

Juvenile Offenders to Receive 24 Hour Monitoring
Friday, September 19, 2014
NBC 5

Critics: Juvenile Offender Monitoring Needs Overhaul In Wake Of Roseland Rape
Thursday, September 18, 2014
CBS 2

Grants to help Juvenile Court offenders
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
nwitimes.com

County Seeks Ideas for Old Cook County Hospital Redevelopment
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
DNAinfo

City backing bid for County tax break
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Pioneer Press

Probation officer suspended after teenís assault on CSU student
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Chicago Sun-Times

Probation Officer For Teen Charged With Assaulting CSU Student Suspended
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
CBS local

Thousands charged with drug possession walk free, leaving taxpayers with the tab
Sunday, September 14, 2014
The Chicago Reporter

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.
^ TOP