Saturday, Jan. 29


Gov. Blagojevich orders DNR to give man his job and wheelchair back       Send a link to a friend

[JAN. 29, 2005]  CHICAGO -- After learning of the decision to lay off an employee who is a wheelchair-user, Gov. Rod Blagojevich ordered the Illinois Department of Natural Resources on Friday to reinstate Arthur "Red" Burchyett and give him back the wheelchair the state purchased for his use several years ago.

"Yes, these are tough times and we have to make tough decisions, but that has to be balanced with compassion and common sense," Blagojevich said. "While we're going to do what it takes to not raise the income tax and not raise the sales tax, and while it's important to run government more efficiently, you can't look at everything in terms of dollars and cents. He should have his job back, and I'm ordering the Department of Natural Resources to give him his job back."

While the Department of Natural Resources offered Burchyett the opportunity to keep the wheelchair and to join a job training program at the Department of Human Services, Blagojevich felt that, given the circumstances, Burchyett should retain his job at the Department of Natural Resources and ordered officials to do so early Friday morning.

Burchyett was to be offered his job back on Friday.

[News release from the governor's office]


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