Who Needs Expertise in Health When It Comes to Texas Women?

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Are you a recent college grad—or even a not-so-recent college grad—who has done some stuff?

Then congratulations! You may qualify for this $100,000 a year job!

The State of Texas Health and Human Services Commission is hiring a Director of Women’s Health and Education Services.

The Director of Women’s Educational Services (Director I) works under the general direction of the Director of Women’s Health and Education Services at the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC). Performs complex managerial work leading the day-to-day operations of the Women’s Educational Services Unit, which includes functions relating to oversight of Alternatives to Abortion, Abstinence-Based Education, and Judicial Bypass programs.

Now, if you want to apply for another director-level position, say, Director of Communications & Publications, you have to have your 4-year degree with coursework in public affairs, communications, public administration, or a field that is at least tangentially related to the job itself. They’d also prefer that you have experience in media relations or communications.

But when it comes to women’s health, we go by the Kinky Friedman rule—how hard can it be?

I mean, reviewing the job description, even Jodie Laubenberg would qualify for this position. Probably. I mean, they’d interview her as a professional courtesy, at the very least.

Quite possibly the only person who wouldn’t qualify is good ol’ Sticky, but I bet they’d give him 9 months of credit for his experience as a former fetus.

Here’s the minimum level of qualifications you must meet for this Director of Women’s Health and Education Services job, the duties of which include the kinds of things we all entered our first job knowing how to do, like developing standards for vendor selection that conform to applicable laws; compliance with state and federal contracting; and overseeing the development and advancement of your team:

Experience interpreting, creating and implementing policies and procedures; Experience interpreting and implementing state or federal laws or regulations; Experience coordinating highly complex projects; Experience writing reports or presentations for a wide variety of audiences; Extensive legislative experience and/or experience serving as a liaison with stakeholder groups; and Work experience with State of Texas, preferred.

Should you have a social work degree?

An education degree?

A health education degree?

Any health-related or education-related experience whatsoever?

Meh … how important are credentials and experience anyway in a state government that employs folks like Ken Paxton?

And by the way, what does a person in this position have to do with judicial bypass procedures? Those are, after all, confidential hearings that take place in the court house. While there are reporting requirements for all abortions performed in Texas, it is not the Educational Services department that receives that data.

Perhaps it is unfair to say that literally anyone will qualify. One line got our spider senses tingling:

Extensive legislative experience and/or experience serving as a liaison with stakeholder groups.

Extensive? Silent on the content of the 4-year degree, but extensive legislative experience? For someone whose job is merely to follow the law and carry out policy?

Perhaps they have a particular person in mind?

We’ll be watching closely to see who steps into this role, and what experience and connections the person has. In light of the state’s egregiously offensive award of $1.6 million women’s health grant to a clinic that provides no medical services whatsoever, it seems likely that this position, too, will be filled by someone with insider connections to anti-abortion activists or politicians and no meaningful qualifications for a job that could impact the life and health of thousands of Texas women and children.


About Author

Andrea Greer

Andrea, an activist, fundraiser, feminist, writer, and baker, is not as tall as you think she is. She's been at this a long time, and wants to know what you are doing to make the pie higher and raise more hell. Her mother would like you to know she's got a law degree.

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