WASHINGTON – Three District of Columbia child welfare workers who were fired for failing to help four young girls found dead last month should be reinstated, an administrative hearing officer has ruled.
The employees, whose names were not released, should not have been fired because the city violated their due process rights, the hearing officer said. The decision was made last week and announced Wednesday.
The city's interim attorney general, Peter Nickles, said the city has no intention of rehiring the employees, noting that the hearing officer's findings are advisory.
"The culture in this town is that there is not a strict sense of accountability when people do not do their duty, and as a result, people are hurt," Nickles said. "In this case, we had the ultimate situation where these four kids were killed. We're not going to accept that."
Mayor Adrian Fenty fired six child welfare workers shortly after the girls' bodies were found decomposing in their rowhouse on Jan. 9. Fenty said the workers didn't do enough to follow up on complaints about the girls' care. The employees included front-line workers and a division director.
The girls' mother, Banita Jacks, remains jailed without bond on murder charges.