Fired worker says he warned officials of possible violence

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) – A former state employee says he was fired soon after telling superiors that he feared possible violent reaction over problems with a new public benefits system.

Norman “Chip” Ward is the former executive director of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ ombudsman’s office. He told The Courier-Journal (http://cjky.it/1ohz3HR ) that hundreds of callers have been frustrated over losing benefits such as Medicaid and food stamps. Ward told the newspaper Monday he was worried an angry client might visit a local state benefit office and become violent.

Cabinet Chief of Staff Steve Davis last week declined to elaborate on Ward’s dismissal, saying it was “a personnel matter.”

The new system, Benefind, launched Feb. 29. The newspaper said earlier that callers to a state hotline have been unable to get through.

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Information from: The Courier-Journal, http://www.courier-journal.com

 

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.

Categories: News, State News

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