Wednesday, January 05, 2005
LANL Censored My Letter
Nov. 12, 2004
Concerned about science
Recent letters to the Daily Newsbulletin have questioned the recent lack of meaningful submissions. In response, an Editor's Note assured us that the Public Affairs Office "encourages employees to express concerns..."
Ok, then. Here's a story that is really an expression of concern. During the recent suspension of operations, as I am sure you all recall, Laboratory staff were under strict orders that, should an outside sponsor contact us via telephone to discuss programmatic issues, the only allowed response was, "I'm sorry, I am not allowed to discuss that at this time. We are in a work shutdown mode."
Well, guess what? One of my group's sponsors called during week two of the suspension of operations, and received the proscribed response. Two hours later the sponsor called back and said, "I'm sorry, but I have no confidence that the Lab will allow you to perform the work we contracted for you to do. Therefore, we are pulling our contract."
In an eye blink, my group lost a three year, $1 million dollar-per-year contract. Shortly afterward, the group leader quit in disgust at having been forced to shun a customer that we had all worked hard to get.
The deputy group leader quit a week later.
Two of the team leaders announced later that they [were] quitting, and three more team leaders in the group are planning to leave the Lab.
Several staff members in the group are planning to leave the Lab.
These are all good people who are leaving because they feel Lab management has created an environment in which science can no longer be done.
Should this be an issue of concern? You be the judge.