Lots Going On At Michigan’s Muskegon Family Care

There seems to be a lot of activity at this federally-funded medical and dental clinic.

First, media reports suggested that the State Police were investigating “possible embezzlement involving staff members at the Muskegon Family Care facility in Muskegon Heights,” (see https://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/2020/02/police-investigate-possible-embezzlement-from-muskegon-family-care.html for discussion.) The media reports single out former CEO Sheila Bridges and discuss a 2014 federal review that identified inappropriate spending on the part of Bridges, including first-class airfares, five-star hotels, and limousines.

The interim CEO of the clinic, citing financial difficulties, laid off about two thirds of the employees on February 14, 2020 and announced that it would shut down on March 13, 2020.

Some of the fired workers commenced a lawsuit on February 16, claiming that they received inadequate notice of termination.

On February 17, 2020, a news release indicated that the shut down would actually take place at the end of March 2020. (see https://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/2020/02/muskegon-family-care-health-clinic-announces-closure-apologizes-for-misunderstanding.html)

Next, on February 21, Sheila Bridges, the former CEO, filed a “whistleblower lawsuit” against the clinic, claiming claiming it had a “sexually hostile” working environment, and that she was fired after making a complaint against a member of the clinic’s board in November, 2019.

Her lawsuit also claims that officials at Muskegon Family Care made “false statements” to others that implied Bridges had embezzled from the health clinic. (see https://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/2020/03/former-ceo-files-whistleblower-lawsuit-against-muskegon-family-care-clinic.html for a discussion of the lawsuit).

On February 28, 2020, Dan Oglesby, the newly-appointed CEO of the clinic, announced that the planned closure would not be taking place and that the clinic is accepting new patients. (see https://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/2020/02/new-muskegon-health-clinic-ceo-makes-stunning-announcement-it-wont-close.html)

Stay tuned – we expect that there is more to follow.