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Streets And Sanitation Ward Boss Caught Using Anti-Semitic Slur On Voicemail To Resident, Inspector General Says

The superintendent reached out to a resident about city services and forgot to hang up the phone after leaving a voice mail, according to a city report. He retired before officials planned to fire him.

A Streets and Sanitation snowplow.
Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago

CHICAGO — A top Streets and Sanitation official retired before being fired after getting caught using an anti-Semitic slur on a voicemail left for a resident, according to a city report.

The incident involved a ward superintendent and was detailed in a first quarter report released Friday by the city’s Office of the Inspector General. The report does not identify the official involved or say when it occured.

The superintendent reached out to the resident about city services and forgot to hang up the phone after leaving a voicemail, according to the report. The resident’s voicemail continued recording, and captured the superintendent speaking to someone else and making the anti-Semitic comment, according to the report.

The inspector general’s office reviewed a copy of the voicemail and the superintendent confirmed they were the person using the slur, according to the report.

The inspector general’s office recommended that Streets and Sanitation fire the superintendent and place them on the city’s do-not-hire list, according to the report. Street and Sanitation officials agreed, but the superintendent retired before he could be dismissed.

“While the city does not comment on individual personnel matters, the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation takes its commitment to serve the residents of Chicago with the utmost seriousness and holds its employees to that standard,” a spokesperson said. The department “has and will continue to forward all claims the department receives to the proper channels for investigation.”

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