This article appeared last week on the website for Channel 9 news in Albany, New York.
I am reprinting the entire article, however I’m deleting the name of the agency out of respect for them.
Check it out, then read my two cents.
A home health aid worker is facing larceny and identity theft charges after the Albany County Sheriff’s office said she stole credit cards during a home health care visit.
Deputies said Shaquana Mayo, 19, of Albany, an employee of [agency name omitted], was assigned to care for a man in Colonie. Police claim she cared for the wheelchair bound man for the month of January, during which time she stole his credit cards and used them at ATM’s, stealing a total of $500.
Mayo was released to appear in Colonie and Albany courts at a later date.
Here are couple of questions that come to my mind.
- When was this caregiver hired ?
- Did the caregiver have a clean criminal background check?
- What kind of screening did this caregiver have?
- Did the company cooperate with police?
- How did the agency respond to the client when the offense was discovered?
- Had the caregiver worked for other clients of the agency?
This brief article leaves more questions than answers. I realize it was little more than a police blotter, but this agency should have been in front of the curve. This article was published on the website, and appeared on the local news. In both situations the employer’s name appeared prominently.
If this were my agency, my press release would land on the desk of every newspaper in every television station for 50 miles before the daily police blotter. My crisis management team would be making a phone call to determine which stations were carrying the story, and being certain that our company name was omitted, or that any extenuating circumstances were included.
Whenever my company name appeared in the press I would want to be a proactive rather than reactive participant.
Let’s hear what you think. Do you agree, or do you believe that letting the story die as quickly as possible is a better strategy?