The County’s Director of Jail Health Care Has Resigned

Myque Obiero lost the support of his staff amid a string of deaths at the jails.

Multnomah County's downtown jail. (Brian Burk)

Myque Obiero, the former nurse who rose to lead Multnomah County’s jail health division, has resigned, effective today.

Obiero, who was promoted to county Corrections Health director in June 2022, oversaw the division during a period of crisis. Seven inmates died in the county’s two adult jails last year, as Obiero struggled to stem a staff exodus. Last month, nurses at the facilities voted nearly unanimously to demand he be fired, citing his failure to address short staffing.

Now, he’s gone. “I want to sincerely thank Myque for over 7 years of service to the Health Department, and for his many contributions through very challenging times,” wrote Rachael Banks, the county health department’s director, in an email announcing his resignation last night.

The county would not say whether Obiero’s resignation came at his employer’s request. But it comes just days after nurses met with Banks and County Chair Jessica Vega Pederson to discuss their concerns. “We are encouraged by recent developments, and we hope the county continues to make improvements and positive changes in Corrections Health,” union spokesman Kevin Mealy says.

Banks says her deputy, Valdez Bravo, will step in immediately to lead the division while the county hunts for a replacement. The shake-up comes as county health leadership was already in flux. Three of the health department’s four largest divisions are now led by interim directors.

A county spokeswoman said she would share “more information about recruitment as soon as it becomes available.” Obiero earned a salary of $194,313.50.

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