This is a part of my statement that led up to my being forced out of a debilitating program.
The second week at MCVET, I was yelled at for coming outside of the bey to find out about the times for going back outside and not being able to read the sign as a result f not having glasses that were lost pryor to getting to MCVET. (A copy of that report follows this report.)I wrote up officer Charles for thoughtless comments that were made towards me in the presence of others that were also being subjected to an ignorant manner of speech. Again, this is because he is giving out what he was given, and it is apparent in the dialogue. Regardless I filed the incident report and it was only then that people started to realize that I wasn’t the average student and had a right to be both respected and heard. I contemplated if I should have even turned the report in but I did because I do believe that we all need to break some form of cycle within the context of our lives whether it be drugs, alcohol, sex or any other plethora of painful syndromes, ailments, addictions or behaviors; MCVET is no different.
We had a townhall meeting and at the townhall in which I asked two questions.
My first question was regarding the bed bugs stating that I had observed the bed bug in the bunk above me and that I took proactive measures to fix the problem as best I could for the short term, questioning the ability to address the issue for the long term. Mr. Kendrick responded by stating that we are to address the platoon leaders and put notes in the suggestion box and that there is a team that will come in twice a month to address the issues on a regular and ongoing basis. I accepted that answer and took a seat.
My next question was on the observation of communication both amongst and with the staff. Mr. Kendrick barked at me with a gesture using his fingers as if commanding a K9 to “Get up! … get up!” I again stood up and stated my name and platoon and requested:
“Mr. Kendrick, I wanted to know if there could be a training session for the students and staff to be given by an outside/third-party source to help with the communications failure at MCVET, because since I’ve been here I have seen a negative display of communication happen between the staff and the student, student to student, and staff to staff.”
At this time Mr. Kendrick barked the command again to, “Sit down! … Sit down!” But by then I was irritated by the way in which it was stated with his fingers and body language, and the snickering which was no doubt was feeding into his egotistical frenzy, as if I wasn’t supposed to speak or didn’t have the right to go where I was already headed. So, I continued standing in defiance because I felt like I was being belittled and on the third “sit down” I sat after I let him know (with my body language) that I wasn’t the average person and I wouldn’t be addressed as average by him or anyone else. He continued belittling my statement by saying that if the staff wasn’t soft enough for us then this isn’t the place for us, and that we should consider leaving because the foul conditions that I was privy to weren’t going to change just because of a carefully worded and respectful request. He was inconsiderate of my thoughts and feelings and those of many others as well.MCVET thrives on below average people, structuring them to strive for, and accept average as a new way of life. I am not below average, and neither are most of the people that I have met at MCVET, and I will always strive for what God’s Purpose is for me, and not that of any man.
After the meeting the head of the case management division pointed out that I handled what was said well, and that I did a good job. She kept telling me to, “keep your head up,” and “just write it up as an incident.” But as he was leaving I wanted to go and confront him about his way of communication and he saw Mrs. Bryant (Supervising Case Manager) speaking and overheard our conversation and me speaking negative of him and told security to “pack his stuff and get him out”, and further stated while I was talking with Mrs. Bryant. “You don’t have to worry about him any more he’s not our problem … He’s out of here!” Again, barked to security to “pack his stuff!”, and then exited the area. I spoke with him one time before and he was aloof to any concept of getting to know me or having an “open door policy” as he stated in our first official meeting which was in a group of six veterans.
In the days that followed I was told that it was written up as a voluntary exit. This was told to me by staff that does not want to be mentioned, understandably because her job might be at risk. This was never the case; I invested my time there with the help that I could give to match the help that was given toward me and even then, paid it forward every chance that I had. I didn’t leave voluntarily, I was thrown out by a leader that didn’t understand what it meant to lead with authority that was empathetic, ethical or moral, because that is what many of the people at MCVET need; not tyrannical rule or narcissistic protocol that allows for others to be considered or treated as below average only to strive for average.
Before I came to MCVET I was living in a trailer with no bed bugs, water that came from a water hose, Lighting that came from a two-hundred-foot extension cord connected to a socket inside of an auto repair shop, and food that was cooked on a hot plate. I had no bed bugs; I didn’t feel demoralized; I had less than what I received materially from MCVET, but I still had a sense of worth; a sense of joy and a sense of peace; a place to temporarily call home. I didn’t wake up to someone talking to me in a derogatory manner, expecting the same in return and yet allowing themselves to think that they were helping me and that it was okay to talk this way to others because “we all have to go through it.” This was the approach offered by the students as a way to accept to “Do as you’re told! … Do as you’re told! … Do as you’re told!” which is stated to the new students at MCVET after they make the student body say “Welcome we need you, don’t go, please stay…. Etc.…”. The way of passing this negative way of thought, the form of communication, and personality on to the next new recruits should be corrected but will always be okay as long it is instilled in the chain of command by the lead in command.
This is the conclusion of my statement with hopes of being recognized as a human being first, a veteran second, and someone that genuinely cares for the betterment of others as well as myself.
Concluded on December 15th, 2017
Review from Guidestar
This is a great place. It is highly structured, with a proud reference to Military. in fact, prior to acceptance into the program, one of the selling points is, "it's Military structure". If you are not serious about recovery, and or have a problem with STRUCTURE, one need not apply. There are many other homeless programs that will house homeless Veterans/Civilians. This program is not for every body, but it works. If you are a VETERAN, interested in addressing your mental/physical health, and or addiction, I recommend this program. This is one of the only programs left in the city, that does not simply put a bandage over a wound, by simply addressing housing. It confronts all barriers that lead to homelessness. And yes, their is room for improvements.
Greetings. I am a female Veteran. My experience at MCVET was exactly what I needed at that time in my life. Mind you, this perspective did not come about until some time after I had come to MCVET. Even as I was physically moving into MCVET and for some time after, I was still under the illusion that I knew what I needed in order to get my life on track, when that could not have been the case.
At that particular point in time, if I was capable of knowing what it was that I needed to get my life on track, I should've been able to keep it on track and avoid my life becoming so desperately unmanageable from the get!
Fortunately for me, MCVET's process to help me get the ball rolling again had me sitting still for a minute, processing and applying new information, and accepting various types of valuable and invaluable therapeutic and vocational assistance to get me back on my feet. I eventually developed new life-skills, completed school, and moved on and into my own apartment.
At times, MCVET was a cocoon, a refuge, a womb, an oasis, a sanctuary, a nurturer, and always a clean, safe, protective environment. It was and is an organization of veterans, by veterans, and for veterans. And although it was more than a minute since I had been discharged from the military, it was made easier for me to almost immediately experience a kinship to my fellow veterans because of the military-style ideals and routines that were practiced in our daily lives.
It was close to six years between the time that I moved on from MCVET and the time that I made the decision to return. This time, though, it wasn't just me that returned, and it wasn't because I was necessarily in need of that particular brand of assistance. I and six other successful MCVETERANS' returned as an organized group of alumni whose primary purpose is to proactively support the effort of MCVET. In the near future, we shall also strive to continue in service to our fellow citizen.
I'm excited and proud to say that we've been active for almost two years now, our numbers are growing, and we are entering our first year of planned activities.
When all is said and done, MCVET helped me to help myself. I worked the program and, in the end, I am successful. Today, I am not only back on my feet, but I'm on them like never before.
And if anyone would like to hear more, or would want to hear this straight from the horses mouth, I am glad to be available. Simply send a text message to 212.203.3130, or send an email to Fibi@txt.att.net.
Thank you for your time and attention. Have a good.
Review from Guidestar
When I came to MCVET I had two pr of underwear the socks I was wearing and two brown pennies. I was mad at every one, but who got me there . My case manager ask me let me help get your life back . I was a pain in the rear, for four years ( smile) I have my own apt. every room was furnished brand new I mean every room. Have some savings. I could go on and on . If you are a VETERAN and need your life back ,go there and tell them MR. HALL sent you. p.s. my name is MR. HALL
Review from Guidestar
This charity regularly abuses veterans by harassment and intimidation. As homeless and addicted individuals they are at a great disadvantage and cannot risk complaining to the proper authorities as the retaliation from MCVET staff will be swift and merciless. They get both a per diem and grant money for each and every veteran they serve, and if the veteran receives any type of disability or trust they require 1/3 of their monies, yet they are operating in the red, despite the fact that senior staff fill their parking lot with new and expensive automobiles.. The staff is almost 99% minority and resulting prejudice against non-minority is quite prevalent.
Review from Guidestar