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Respond to two students discussion post. Just type the paragraph under the discussion. It doesn’t have to be in essay form.

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Also, make sure that your response(s) are substantial and at least 250 words.  In your responses, you must include connections to course learning objectives. 

Discussion Post #1

When I think about my family’s experience with public agencies within our government, the one agency that sticks out to me the most is the Department of Family and Children Services. I believe my experience with this particular agency was so memorable because of the need that my family and I were in and the service that I was given. Public agencies like the Department of Family and Children Services use the Preamble of the U.S. Constitution as a foundation to treat people. This foundation of treatment includes fairness, peace, protection, care, and freedom for every single citizen of America. It is well known that some of our public agencies have a reputation that is far from the greatest regarding the service that they give to stakeholders. The problem is that we aren’t looked as stakeholders all the time, we aren’t necessarily looked at as citizens either. I understand that individuals have a job to do but a little goes a long way when we don’t dehumanize our citizens and understand that lives are in the balance whenever we are handling stakeholders. 

The service was great at this branch that I went to. I was looking to apply for benefits for my children as well as see if I would qualify for WIC. The first thing that stood out to me was the initiative to protect the rights of the citizen. This is outlined in the article in module 1 that speaks to the “protection of citizen rights and the accountability upon the agency to protect it” (Moe, 1995). It may not be much to some, but for me, it meant everything to see how the caseworkers went about protecting my data. There were procedures and protocols in place to keep my information as confidential as possible. In some cases, this isn’t always the case as I’ve seen caseworkers firsthand have client information scattered across their desks when meeting with me. I am a victim of identity theft, so I take safety precautions very seriously. It is important for caseworkers and people who are handling data to take these measures as seriously as stakeholders do. 

Another principle that the article touched on that was on full display in my experience was the accountability that was set on branch managers to ensure that the law is interpreted correctly. According to Rediscovering principles of public administration: the neglected foundation of public law, principle three states “Executive branch managers are held legally accountable by reviewing courts for maintaining procedural safeguards in dealing with both citizens and employees and for conforming to legislative deadlines and substantive standards” (Moe, 1995). I am a firm believer that as the head of anything goes, so does the body. If there is corruption at the top of any organization, it is safe to assume that there will be corruption trickling down through the rest of the organization. While dealing with the case manager, she disclosed that if I’m not happy with the decision made regarding my application for benefits, I could appeal. She also walked me through the appeal process and the organizational structure that ensured checks and balances. I didn’t know these structures existed and I honestly thought the buck stopped with the case manager. I thought that my destiny was in her and hands and there wasn’t anything that I could do about the decision, as it would be final. It was refreshing for me to see that government principles exist even in the lowest part of the organization. 

Discussion Post #2

A public agency that I have been closely involved with since I was a senior high school was the local election board within my community. I always had an interest in politics so when I was informed that I could volunteer behind the scenes to get a better understanding of the election process, and the guidelines that were put in place to protect the twelfth amendment of the constitution. This public agency really helped emphasize the importance of the “We the people” opener in the preamble of the Constitution because it is all about the people of the community, and the those that work or volunteer at the election officials are doing so to guarantee that the people have the say in what is best for the community, state, and nationally. The local election board seems to firmly implement the election bylaws set forth by the state and federal guidelines. Our local election agency is one public administration sector that I can honestly say that I trust due to their visibility of the process.

Trust in public administration has been an area of interest in the past few presidential elections as there has been a lot of mudslinging in campaigns to tarnish candidates’ reputations due to lack of visibility in things such as charitable involvement, personal finances, and personal family matters. One of the principles that stuck out the most with all the uncertainty that faces our nation is “The purpose of the agency management is to implement the laws passed by Congress as elected representatives of the people.” The agency that is currently in the hot seat currently and has seemed to lost sight of its purpose is the United States Postal Service (USPS). The missions and priorities of the USPS have recently changed causing political uproar within all the branches of the government, and some of the American people. Congress is having to step in and do an intervention to assist in this public administration turmoil similar to the role of a comanager in order to get the program back on track.

Another area of interest within the public administration that is an area of improvement is visibility and accountability, which is an area that our nation has slowly declined over the past couple of decades. The principle that struck a chord when relating to current issues is, “Public accountability requires the inherently governmental functions and tasks are performed by officers of the United States and their government-employed subordinates.” Every agency and branch has faced multiple series of adversities, but none of them have openly been held accountable for the good or bad decisions that were made to impact the American people. Each agency has openly blamed one another for the downfall of the country as opposed to coming together for the greater good to solve the many issues that the American people are facing. Once all public administration agencies get back to understanding and implementing policies that are in line with the Constitution and the vision of our founding fathers then the success and prosperity of the United States will flourish again.

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