4/4/20 - A Message from Secretary Hou: Employee Spotlight

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Good afternoon, IDHS Staff:

The selfless work of an IDHS employee never ceases. Thank you again for your daily efforts in providing care and service to families throughout Illinois.

It does not take much to be reminded of the days we are now living in due to COVID-19. Throughout our communities, families are turning to IDHS for services in record numbers. We have seen the impact this has had on our hospitals and healthcare systems.

Daily, Governor Pritzker works to access more items to serve you as you work on the frontlines. These items continue to be shipped across our State hospitals and developmental centers as we work together to fight this virus. No matter the day or the issue, our staff continue to lead, inspire, and pull our communities together. This includes people like Byron Clemons.

Today's Bright Spot: Byron Clemons II (Security Therapy Aide - Alton Mental Health Center)

Fulfilling the duty of Security Therapy Aide, Byron Clemons, II, is known for championing the voices of union members to management and for taking on tasks above and beyond the call of duty.

This was witnessed when IDHS' psychiatric hospitals started to have dedicated staff work the triage unit for patients coming into the hospital due to COVID- 19 . Bryon and others immediately realized that the identified unit was their assigned unit. They were willing to remain in the unit and to provide services to those patients being triaged. Also serving as AFSCME 124 Union President, Byron was able to galvanize the other staff to stay in the assigned area to ensure that the triage unit ran smoothly.

During these times, this type of leadership is both inspirational and very, very much appreciated.

Thank you to Byron, to AFSCME Union 124, and to all of the staff at Alton Medical Health Center for their dedicated work during this trying time.

Thank you,


Grace B. Hou

Secretary, IDHS