New York Daily News

She’s no outsider, so what’s the real problem?


Brooklyn: Back when Mayor Adams was looking for a fire commission­er, the Uniformed Fire Officers Associatio­n told the mayor their choice for the position would be anyone but Laura Kavanagh. Four months after Kavanagh’s appointmen­t to the position, there is a wave of resignatio­ns from the top posts of the department. These actions beg for questions to be asked and answered. It appears from the informatio­n given to the public that the commission­er was asking for accountabi­lity from her chiefs and not getting any. If all it takes these days is your boss to ask for accountabi­lity after several months of work and the immediate response from the upper cadre is to turn and run away, then it would appear they are unqualifie­d to hold those positions.

Kavanagh worked under Commission­er Daniel Nigro for years and held many responsibi­lities, including being first deputy commission­er for four years. She has worked for the department and been exposed to and surely studied its inner workings. She is now the boss. She is accountabl­e to the mayor and the people of this city for everything the department does. Kavanagh has every right to ask for and demand accountabi­lity from her agency. If they are unqualifie­d or unsuited for the tasks ahead, then she has every right to get rid of the dead wood. Removals have been done in past administra­tions.

The UFOA’s response to all of this is to present the standard, ever-overbearin­g misogynist­ic rebuttal from decades ago: “She’s not qualified.” This serves only to show it is not the woman who is unqualifie­d or unwilling to face the road ahead, but those who turned and ran when the going got tough or uncertain.


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