State Guarantees Local Jobs for Psych Center Workers

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The state Office of Mental Health says the 520 employees at the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center in Ogdensburg will be allowed to remain in the north country if they choose.

After a personal discussion with the governor, state Senator Patty Ritchie (R. - 48th District) says she received a letter Monday from OMH Acting Commissioner Kristin Woodlock.

In the letter, Woodlock guaranteed the jobs will remain in the north country under the state's mental health restructuring plan.

Woodlock says about 260, or half of the center's current employees, work in outpatient community services and in the sex offender treatment program.

Woodlock says the remaining staff will have be able to work in the expanded community services outpatient hub or will be given other choices, including being retrained for other positions in their home communities.
 
Ritchie says the state OMH will also work with the Department of Civil Service and other state agencies to explore job opportunities for workers looking at other options for employment.

In addition, voluntary reassignments will be offered allowing workers to take a position with another state OMH facility without Civil Service clearance restrictions.

See the letter

Saturday, December 20, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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