TEXARKANA — The City of Texarkana, Texas, placed an employee of the city’s fire department on paid administrative leave following an investigation into a Facebook post that included what the city called “racially charged statements.”
According to the city, they were made aware of the post made on the employee’s personal Facebook account, and the post was evaluated according to the city’s personnel policy conduct regarding prohibited activities and use of social media.
The city says that Mayor Bob Bruggeman, city manager Shirley Jaster, and fire chief Eric Schlotter are “disappointed and angered” at the statements written in the Facebook post.
“We want to convey our deepest apologies for the actions of this employee and vehemently refute what was said. The sentiments do not in any way reflect the values of the City of Texarkana, Texas,” a statement from the city read on Tuesday.
The city says they are heartbroken for the African-American community across the nation, not just in the city. The city also thanked citizens for the peaceful protests and believe, “change can come from difficult conversations, open minds, honesty and effort.”
Texarkana, Texas, also says they promise to make the principles of providing a “Welcoming and Safe Environment” to everyone a core guide in how they listen, engage, educate, and interact with the citizens of Texarkana.