Liberal groups are always claiming they’re for the little guy. Labor unions claim to support employee rights and their best interests. Liberal candidates rail against “unfair” pay and high CEO salaries. They pledge workplace “fairness.”
But do they walk the walk? A surprising number don’t.
The website Glassdoor, which allows current and former employees to rate their companies, offers a peek behind the curtain at whether liberal groups are so high and mighty. The truth, according to former and current employees, is revealing.
Clinton Health Access Initiative
An arm of the Clinton Foundation, the Clinton Health Access Initiative recently came under scrutiny after a performance review found that its CEO had shown “disdain” for the board of directors and shown “duplicitousness with management.” A number of employee reviews show that the name “Clinton” shouldn’t be confused with “golden.”
What Employees Say:
“In most cases, individuals are promoted on the basis of nepotism. As a result, the organization has really horrible managers as high up as even the Director-level. In any case, one learns more from bad managers than good ones.”
“CHAI staff used to pride itself on being frugal and money was being channeled to programs. Recently directors have started purchasing brand new Land Cruisers and drive around town in these fancy cars. Wait, what? We used to drive some of the most basic cars and now we have these shiny fancy SUVs.”
“Pay is poor, benefits are the bare minimum. … [L]ow overheads which is good since most benefit to client/patient but results in worker burnout due to poor work-life balance coupled first point above on poor pay. The personality cult of [CEO] Ira Magaziner overshadows implementation in some cases.”
“Turnover at CHAI is due to two main factors: burnout due to high stress with lack of coaching and poaching from other teams for projects suddenly deemed more important that month/quarter/semester… CHAI’s reputation in country is definitely in jeopardy because of the lack of an effective structure to engage with partner countries and no experienced (real) managers.”
Service Employees International Union (SEIU)
One of the major labor unions in the country and a group that spent $28 million supporting Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign, SEIU claims to represent and support service workers such as nurses and security guards. Now behind the supposedly employee-oriented “Fight for $15” movement, the SEIU’s own employees say this place is far from a workers’ paradise.
What Employees Say:
“12-18 hour workdays…fighting for things that you as an organizer will never have.”
“Catty, viscous atmosphere. Everyone seemed to think everyone else was an idiot behind their back which meant they were likely saying the same thing about you. Very little ever got done.”
“No promotion. Racist. Sexist. Ablest. All the people of color get fired or look for other places. Office politics. Horrible people in management. The toxicity is promoted and encouraged from above. You have to brown nose.”
“Insane hours, vicious manipulative and petty lead organizers, rampant nepotism that makes it impossible to get ahead unless you’re somebodies sister or sleeping with the boss, no acknowledgement of good work only criticism.”
“The leadership is racist & negligent under the pretense of ‘fighting for the cause’. They help each other advance in ranks by stepping on the work of others. There’s SUPER HIGH turnover.”
“Staff routinely work 60 – 80 hours a week. We were expected to regularly work evenings, weekends and holidays, in addition to the ‘regular’ work week, for no additional pay. Forget about having any personal plans or a personal life if you work there.”
Humane Society of the United States
Despite its name, the Humane Society of the United States isn’t actually affiliated with the numerous humane societies in cities and counties across the country. Instead, it’s a liberal lobbying group with an extreme animal rights agenda intended to shut down hunting and meat-eating. But this group doesn’t seem to get what the word “humane” means, according to some reviewers. Reviewers have complained about sexism and cronyism, as well as an extreme pay gap between execs and younger employees.
What Employees Say:
“Low pay and everyone appears to be overworked and stretched. Infighting and executive staff pay (compared to mid tier, hands on workers) is excessive.”
“Toxic work environment at times. If you think you left the world of bullying and mean-girl cliques behind in high school, think again.”
“There are very valid concerns of female staff that a male leadership volunteer with a history of sexual harassment and rape charges had extensive contact with our staff and no one has ever been notified or warned to stay away from him. This, and many other internal concerns, makes me fear that the organization is one scandal away from oblivion.”
“Work harder, for less money than you deserve. And if you don’t like it, leave. How’s that for progressive? Years of awful internal bureaucracy, including and especially from an often surly, insensitive, unresponsive and indifferent HR department, nepotism, red tape, low morale, and lack of investment in staff is dismantling this organization from the inside out.”
“There’s cronyism, nepotism, and ‘mean girl’ cliques. … The execs are out of touch and the board is out of reach.”
Media Matters for America
Calling itself a “media watchdog,” Media Matters was founded by Clinton hack David Brock. This progressive outfit has been outed before for not practicing what it preaches—such as when a Media Matters staffer illegally carried a handgun to protect Brock and the organization. Additionally, it has kept many of its donors quiet despite criticizing right-leaning groups for doing the same thing—and its employees have shed some additional light on what goes on behind the curtains.
What Employees Say:
“High-turnover due to: lack of diversity, low ceiling, no built-in development. Senior-level management is too single-tracked minded, rarely consider and implement critical input from researchers to keep employees happy…does not pay nearly enough (starting salary: $35k) …folks of color rarely last here.”
“Media Matters doesn’t care about providing decent benefits or opportunities for advancement because there will ALWAYS be another round of kids to replace you. That’s pretty smart, but it makes it a bad place to work. Unsurprisingly, turnover was incredibly high while I was there.”
“Promotions are largely based on personal relationships rather than professional, which leads to underqualified people filling high positions while talent languishes in smaller capacity roles. Extremely high turnover due to low morale in research staff. At one point in my tenure there, almost every single researcher was searching for employment opportunities elsewhere.”
“All staff is often overworked as you’re basically fighting the ocean with a teaspoon and, as a ‘journalist,’ (or are you a non-profiter?), you’re supposed to like working all the time. Sometimes they clean house. Sometimes they hire more people than they can manage. It’s not clear who’s managing what. If you’re not a pseudo-journalist you will be shunned.”
Human Rights Campaign
The Human Rights Campaign lobbies for equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, and for protection from things like workplace discrimination. But it seems the organization has a “do as I say, not as I do” problem.
What Employees Say:
“A very hostile work environment.”
“They will haze you the first year and make life or any idea of work/life balance impossible. Proceed with caution.”
“HRC lives up to its image as an upper class ‘gay men’s’ organization. If you’re not ‘in’ with the gay men who run this organization, don’t expect any upward mobility. Expect sexism and cliquiness among employees. There is extremely high support staff turnover here because people continually quit after they are burnt out from being overworked, not taken seriously, and lousy pay.”
Not a great place to grow and they pay very low. Finance Department is all over the place and the people who are running the department obviously do not know what they’re doing. If you know someone in the company, you’ll definitely get in even if you’re not qualified. For a company that is supposed to support equality, many employees are not treated that way.”
The union notorious for its ties to the mafia is also a major funder of left-wing causes—more than 90 percent of the Teamsters’ political donations go to Democrats. But the union that pushes for worker equality could use some lessons in self-analysis.
What Employees Say:
“There are no really career opportunities. employees and managers never eat lunch together. you will find people who have been working on the same position for more than 20 years.”
“Expect to come here and waste away. Stuck in the 1950’s. Rampant sexual harassment. Member’s work hard to pay overpriced salaries and benefits and lots of luxury trips and dinners. There really should be investigations into this. Political backstabbing. People who aren’t qualified gets Cush jobs because of political favor or nepotism and they never ever leave. If only the members knew what really goes on. Shameful to do this on the backs of working people. No wonder unions are irrelevant.”
“Too many secrets from members, secretary treasurers don’t promote by seniority, and they fire older workers.”
“The old boy network is alive and well. Women are not valued and are segregated, not even invited to the Company Christmas luncheon. This is a labor union, but the current management treat their ‘office girls’ with contempt. They use the lessons they’ve learned from their worst employers against their own employees. The environment is full of suspicion and backstabbing.”
“Everything else – the backstabbing, the lack of helpful communication, the blatant cronyism and nepotism. If you want to learn something in your career and actually have management that doesn’t vacillate back and forth between non-existent and overly micro-managed, stay away.”
Open Society Foundations
Billionaire European George Soros has put loads of money into changing America’s culture and electing liberal politicians. His Open Society Foundations have pushed “progressive” causes from rolling back anti-drug laws to ‘gay rights.’ But it’s hardly a progressive workplace, per the reviews of its staff.
What Employees Say:
“Sometimes arbitrary management style, few managers are open to honest (critical) employee feedback, new foundation director has created far too much paperwork and bureaucracy for both staff and grantees.”
“Top heavy and lack of responsibility at higher level, long working hours, no opportunities for promotions.”
“You can work like a dog for very little money….Dealing with the toxic management wasn’t worth it, but maybe other parts of the organization are different. It’s a shame, it could be a nice place to work if it weren’t an abusive environment.”
“Lack of integrity is very common. Dictatorial, infantile, self serving program directors. Systems make it possible for lots of mischief to happen. Amount spent on directors egos can run entire programs. Regions are closed societies and not open society.”
“Rampant racism and sexism remain a serious problem that management refuses to tackle. In short, while OSF espouses principles of human rights, this is only outward facing. Internally, human rights and employees rights are routinely set aside”