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United Way requests information after The Shelter controversy

The Shelter
Posted at 12:14 PM, Feb 25, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-14 06:15:28-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The United Way of the Big Bend is requesting information from The Shelter after a blogger's allegations lead to two employees being fired and the director being placed on administrative leave.

The United Way of the Big Bend provides funding for The Shelter, which is a center for Tallahassee's homeless population. Officials from both agencies met to discuss The Shelter's current issues and allegations.

As a result, United Way is requesting that the The Shelter submit a full report to them  covering topics such as safety, sexual harassment, treatment of the clients, staffing concerns, and moving forward. There are specific questions asked under each of these subjects as they relate to various allegations of abuse, mismanagement and safety issues. The report is due by March 1, 2013.

United Way is also requesting that an outside expert source, approved by officials from UWBB and The Shelter, conduct a study of the agency. The timeline for that assessment is to be complete by April 30, 2013, according to the United Way.

In a United Way release, it states that members of The Shelter Board’s Executive Committee have been "extremely responsive" so far, and are "working hard" to address the issues. They add that they are "confident in our action plan and are moving forward in a positive spirit of cooperation, coupled with an appropriate sense of urgency."

The controversy stems from a blog article called "Undercover at the Shelter," written by Renee Miller. In the article, Miller says she spent all night at The Shelter and endured unfavorable conditions and verbal abuse.