Vt. union reverses chief’s firing
MONTPELIER — The Vermont State Employees’ Associated on Monday reinstated its executive director more than a month after he was fired, and two top lawyers with the union resigned.
“After meeting today to thoroughly review and deliberate an independent investigator’s findings into allegations regarding VSEA Executive Director Mark Mitchell, the VSEA Board of Trustees has determined that the charges against Mitchell do not warrant dismissal by this body,” the union said in a statement. “Mr. Mitchell has been invited to return immediately to his role as VSEA Executive Director,” it added.
Meanwhile, the union announced that its top lawyers, General Counsel Michael Casey and Associate General Counsel Abigail Winters had resigned, effective Aug. 2.
Neither Mitchell nor VSEA President John Reese immediately returned calls seeking comment on Monday. Last month, Reese and Mitchell said that Casey and Winters raised allegations, which he would not specify, against Mitchell, prompting the board’s vote to fire the executive director.
The following week, the union announced it had reversed the firing, instead placing Mitchell on paid leave and saying an investigation would be conducted. Monday’s action followed that investigation.
The union said in its statement, “VSEA is determined to put this incident behind the union and continue to do what VSEA does best, which is to effectively represent state employees on contract and workplace issues and advocate for workers at every level. The VSEA membership remains solid and committed to moving forward and making VSEA even stronger.”