Author Topic: SLS in Brewster, NY?  (Read 28710 times)

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Offline Doctor_Magoo

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SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #30 on: October 01, 2007, 12:48:31 PM »
Quote from: ""red lion""
Thanks for the clarification magoo. I appreciate that.


No problem red lion.  You found a forum where most of us have experienced the same types of abuse, whether as children or as adults.  I commend all of you who are involved in bringing this company down.
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Offline Doctor_Magoo

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SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #31 on: October 01, 2007, 12:51:24 PM »
I actually have to say one more thing about this matter.  To people like snagglepuss especially.  How can you claim that people are lying about what happened at this program?  There is a website up that clearly documents the OMH investigations and the lawsuit.  To claim those are lies is absolutely astonishing to me, especially since all of that info is coming from patients and the actual governemnt.  So what lies are you actually claiming have been made?  I would love to hear what you have to say.
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Offline red lion

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SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #32 on: October 01, 2007, 02:43:27 PM »
The snagglepuss's of the world use shame to say - oh well, you were 'bad/fucked up/anti-christ" so you MUST have deserved to be treated badly! Their favorite thing on the program menu is shaming-du-jour.

But there is such a thing as unlawful incarceration. & the funny thing is, these jackasses still think we are "losers" in society. The truth is we aren't. We have gone on to succeed in virtually every area of society. We are mothers, fathers, teachers, doctors, artists, etc etc - we just share the same unfortunate story of abuse from the hands at greedy charlatans.

Bring it on snagglepuss. You'll be exposed for the creepy POS you truly are.

 :rofl:
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Offline Ursus

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Is SLS trying to buy off the Putnam County Sheriff's Dept.?
« Reply #33 on: October 01, 2007, 08:00:27 PM »
Here is an article in the New York Journal News (LoHud) touching on the abysmal state of affairs in the Putnam County Sheriff's Department:

===========================

Stalled contract drains sheriff's department
By SUSAN ELAN | THE JOURNAL NEWS
(Original publication: August 2, 2007)

Putnam's failure to negotiate contracts with Sheriff's Department employees has demoralized staff, cost the county more in overtime and is turning Putnam into a training ground for other departments, Sheriff Donald Smith has warned county officials.

The 72-member Putnam Sheriff's Employee Association, without a contract since January 2003, has resumed public protest. Over the weekend, about 50 of the union's correction officers, clerical workers, dispatchers and cooks picketed at Putnam's annual 4-H fair to bring their plight to the attention of residents, union President Robert Wendover said.

"Our situation is horrible," he said. "Members are taking out loans on their retirement accounts, and some are on the verge of losing their houses. I'm working three to four days of overtime a week to get by."...
    ...continue with remainder of article
HERE[/list]===========================

I'm not going to post the whole article, as it is quite long, and not of primary pertinence here.  Suffice it to say that there is a whole lot of crap going on and people are pissed.  The Sheriff's Dept. is working without a contract in place and is for the most part -- with the notable exception of Sheriff Donald Smith -- grossly underpaid.  The article appears to have generated some heated discussion in the LoHud forums.
 
Of some interest is a post that indicates a contribution of $10,000 from SLS, raised by Sheriff Donald Smith:

===========================

http://forums.nyjournalnews.com/viewtop ... 9&start=54
policeblotter
Joined: 20 Jul 2007
Posts: 113

PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2007 3:45 pm    
Post subject:    
    Putnam Resident:

    What the public doesn't know can't be protested about.

    Did Smith make a public announcement, telling everyone that 30 people have recently left?

    Did he tell everyone about Eldrige's plan to do away with the Communication's Division?

    Do you really think he would tell anyone?

    The way things are done is tell you what is good for you. They know best. Everyone else knows nothing.

Fair race? Smith raises $10,000 per year from a Company called SLS, who is currently under investigation, in a non-election year, and you'd like to see a "fair" race?[/list]
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Offline Ursus

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SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #34 on: October 01, 2007, 11:44:40 PM »
Some more mentions of the generosity SLS bequeaths to the Putnam County Sheriff's Department.

From LoHud forum's thread 'SLS Health Related Posts,' specifically this one:

Enforcethelaw!
Joined: 24 Mar 2007
Posts: 1114
Posted: Wed Jun 20, 2007 11:13 am
    And you people should know that SLS AND the owner of it are both heavy, heavy money contributors to Sheriff Don Smith of the Putnam County Sheriff's Department. Ever wonder why SLS gets away with all this stuff? Check it out for yourself. Don't believe me. They contributed thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands and thousands to Sheriff Don Smith's political coffers, AND THERE ISN'T EVEN AN ELECTION.

    GEE, I WONDER IF THIS GUY IS BUYING PROTECTION FROM LAW ENFORCEMENT SO HE DON'T GET ARRESTED. 'YA THINK???

And this one, from the LoHud thread titled 'Putnam's paid ambulance service ready to quit contract':

policeblotter
Joined: 20 Jul 2007
Posts: 114
Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2007 3:43 pm  
Post subject: Be careful what you wish for........
    FOLLOW THE SLS MONEY TRAIL.

    You would like a Journal News investigative report of SLS? Are you sure?

    To head off any potential criminal investigation, they contribute more money to Sheriff Don Smith than movie stars contribute to Presidential candidates, upwards of $10,000.00 per year, and this doesn't include sponsoring golf tournaments. Yet, we're supposed to believe that there is no intent to buy influence.
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Offline Anonymous

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New Article on SLS
« Reply #35 on: October 20, 2007, 10:38:32 AM »
State could take months to rule on abuse charges against Putnam mental health facility
Terence Corcoran The Journal News
October 14, 2007 12:05 PM

SOUTHEAST - It could be months before the state rules on allegations that a private mental health facility in Southeast violated its patients' rights and broke the law.

SLS Residential Inc., which treats troubled teens and young adults from Putnam, Westchester and Rockland counties and beyond at two treatment facilities in Southeast, was fined $80,000 last year by the state Office of Mental Health for violations of the state's Mental Hygiene Law. At the time, the state ordered SLS to stop admitting patients, although it later rescinded that order.

The state alleged that SLS, which runs its residential program at two large houses on North Brewster Road and off Putnam Avenue near Route 6, routinely restrained patients and prevented them from making phone calls. It also claimed that staff would search patients, their rooms and packages sent to them.


SLS decided to contest the fine, which it has not paid yet, and the charges in a hearing before the state Office of Mental Health.

OMH spokeswoman Jill Daniels said those hearings routinely take four to five business days to complete. But the SLS hearing was held over two weeks in July and continued several more days in September.

"The hearing process is still continuing," Daniels said last week. "The testimony part was completed at the end of September. The next part of the process involves written submissions back and forth between (SLS and OMH) before a decision is made. It may not be decided until sometime next year."

Joseph Santoro, co-chairman of SLS, did not return calls seeking comment on the hearing and the charges. In the past, however, the company has said the negative report it received from the state was unlike any it had been given in its 20-year history and chalked it up to record keeping and a difference of opinions between SLS and state mental health evaluators.


The OMH report, issued last November, found that SLS employees hired since 2005 were not fingerprinted and could have criminal backgrounds, and that SLS patients who misbehaved were forced to wear a jumpsuit that would require everyone in the facility to ostracize them.

The allegations by the state mirror those of two New Jersey residents and former SLS patients in a $225 million federal class action lawsuit filed earlier this year against various companies affiliated with SLS, alleging they were physically and emotionally abused while patients there.

Goshen attorney Michael Sussman filed the suit in federal court in White Plains for Nicholas J. Romano and Deborah A. Morgan, both in their early 20s, and on behalf of many unnamed patients. The suit seeks millions in compensatory and punitive damages. It claims that SLS violated the rights of patients under the Americans With Disabilities Act and that money was the reason that patients were not allowed to make or receive phone calls because if patients complained to their families and were removed, SLS would lose revenue. Romano was at SLS in 2004 and 2005, while Morgan was there in 2005 and 2006.


Sussman said the lawsuit is pending in White Plains federal court and was not surprised to learn that SLS continues to fight the state charges.

"The charges the state filed go to the heart of their operation and, obviously, to concede to those charges would not only open SLS up to a significant state penalty, it would also have a major implication on the federal litigation," Sussman said. "I'm not at all surprised that they're fighting it."

SLS made news last year when it took a Pleasantville lawyer to court to keep him from protesting outside its facilities. Attorney Glen Feinberg, whose son was a patient at SLS in 2001 and 2002, felt that his son was traumatized by the treatment and wanted to picket SLS facilities to warn others. Feinberg, who was supported by the New York Civil Liberties Union, eventually won that right.
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Offline Ursus

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SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #36 on: October 25, 2007, 12:47:33 PM »
Link for the above article, in case anyone else is following this:

State could take months to rule on abuse charges against Putnam mental health facility
By TERENCE CORCORAN
THE JOURNAL NEWS

(Original publication: October 14, 2007)
http://lohud.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article? ... 027/NEWS11
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Offline Anonymous

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SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #37 on: October 27, 2007, 04:41:24 PM »
It appears to me that no one at Fornits cares about this.  I guess it does not matter since children are not being abused?  What about adults?  They can be abused too?  And this is no different then the WASSP situation.

Break it down:

Parents of the mentally ill are manipulated into paying large sums of money for treatment of their loved ones.

These loved ones are abused, violated and broken.


Should they not get as much attention as everyone else in this forum?  Does this really sound any different then what most of us have already experienced?

Shame on everyone.
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Offline Ursus

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SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #38 on: October 27, 2007, 05:34:18 PM »
Naw, I hear ya.  But its a similar situation to that of Benchmark, which also deals with that borderline population, namely one that deals with both teens and young adults.  It doesn't get all that much traffic either.  But it is still important.  I find it noteworthy that HEAL has both these facilities grouped together on the same page.  I suggested over in Web Forum Hosting that perhaps these two facilities could be grouped together somehow, for the benefit of both.  That balloon hasn't taken off yet.  A good fornits poster to ask/touch base with re. that possibility would be psy, who attended Benchmark.

I hear rumors that fornits may be moving to a SMF format, so decisions like that might be put off.  But there has to be more stink than one bear can produce, if you catch my drift.  SLS folk need to ingrain themselves more here, so that the fornits community will recognize the need.  I think sayitaintsojoe does such a fine job of keeping y'all up to speed on the blog; I'm not sure SLS folk feel the need to post here, but they should, if they want more press time here.  I try to do what I can, I haven't forgotten, but sometimes life happens and gets in the way of doing everything the way you would want to.

Along those same lines, I think more treatment of topics in the TTI forum would get more folks' attention.  The New Info forum here doesn't get quite the same attention as the TTI does.  That said, it can also get pretty raunchy there, enough to offend just about everybody at some time or another.  'Tis the nature of the beast...

Feel free to PM me.  I was over on the blog a few days ago, haven't had a chance to check back yet, but I will...

Keep the faith! ::peace::  It isn't always easy or perfect, but we just gotta keep chippin' away at it...
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Offline Anonymous

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Re: SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #39 on: October 08, 2008, 12:38:16 PM »
SLS Residential, LLC, a private mental health facility located in Putnam County, NY, has been sanctioned for threatening former patients who are potential plaintiffs in a class actions lawsuit.  SLS runs two residential treatment centers in the town of Southeast, NY  for adolescents and young adults.  In addition to a class action lawsuit, SLS is facing revocation of its state operating licenses for the two facilities.

The class action lawsuit, filed by two former SLS Residential patients, alleges that they were subjected to physical and mental abuse.  The complaint, which was filed on behalf of all SLS patients, seeks  $75 million in compensatory damages, $150 million in punitive damages and an injunction that would bar SLS from further violating patients’ rights.

The SLS class action lawsuit  alleges that staff illegally employed manual restraints and put patients in isolation rooms where they were physically and emotionally abused, subjected patients to nightly searches of their bodies and rooms, and denied patients the right to refuse treatment, leave the facility or phone family members.  The complaint also charges SLS with discrimination under the Americans With Disabilities Act, and claims patients were targeted for mistreatment because they were mentally disabled.

Southern District Judge Stephen Robinson assessed SLS $35,000 in sanctions after he determined that 80 former patients  had been told by SLS therapists that their private medical records would be made public if they became plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit. In some cases, the therapists falsely told their former patients that the judge had actually ordered the publication of medical records.

At a hearing held by Judge Robinson on July 8, a therapist who had worked at SLS for two years testified that its Chief Clinical Officer, Dr. Shawn Prichard, had called a meeting to discuss contacting the potential class action lawsuit plaintiffs and their families, and distributed a list of their names and phone numbers.

In addition to using threats to coerce  former patients into opting out of the class action lawsuit,  the callers contacted other institutions where some former SLS patients were being treated and tried to convince personnel at institutions to sign opt outs on their patients’ behalf.

In levying sanctions against SLS, Judge Robinson called the defendant’s conduct “egregious”.   “Under the guise of caring for their former patients, the defendants sought to capitalize on the potential plaintiffs’ vulnerability and discourage them from participating in the lawsuit.” Judge Robinson said. “This conduct is astounding to the court.”

In his decision, the judge held SLS management responsible for the conduct of the therapists.  “These calls were not the result of inadvertence, misplaced good intentions, or even the product of rogue employees who took it upon themselves to manipulate class members,” Judge Robinson said. “Rather, it was a scheme designed and implemented by the very highest managers at SLS who are, not incidentally, named defendants in this lawsuit.”

In addition to the $35,000 Judge Robinson voided all of the opt-outs signed by potential plaintiffs, and ordered corrective notices to be mailed. He also ordered all the defendants to cease contact with the potential plaintiffs.

The class action lawsuit is not the only legal battle that SLS Residential is facing right now.  Last week, SLS filed a lawsuit in the New York state Supreme Court seeking to reverse the revocation of its operating license by the state Office of Mental Health (OMH).  In 2006, OMH fined SLS Residential $110,000 for violations of the state Mental Hygiene Law and ordered that it stop admitting patients - and stop violating the rights of the patients it was treating.  The OMH said SLS Residential routinely restrained clients and kept them from making phone calls. It also found that staff would search patients, their rooms and packages sent to them.

In seeking to revoke its licenses, OMH alleged that SLS used illegal restraints on patients long after being told not to, that it administered sedatives to patients when they refused to take their medications and that it failed to report troubling incidents to the state, including patients behaving suicidally and complaining of abuse by staff.
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Offline Ursus

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Re: SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #40 on: October 10, 2008, 01:51:23 PM »
Quote
In his decision, the judge held SLS management responsible for the conduct of the therapists. "These calls were not the result of inadvertence, misplaced good intentions, or even the product of rogue employees who took it upon themselves to manipulate class members," Judge Robinson said. "Rather, it was a scheme designed and implemented by the very highest managers at SLS who are, not incidentally, named defendants in this lawsuit."

Good for Judge Robinson!!! It is great to finally see someone with the balls to do the right thing, not to mention these sleazoids getting their due. But this class action lawsuit isn't over yet, is it? The $35,000 is just a sanctions SLS incurred due to their despicable behavior in the process, no?

Quote
SLS filed a lawsuit in the New York state Supreme Court seeking to reverse the revocation of its operating license by the state Office of Mental Health (OMH).

I think SLS is just trying to buy time and leverage. What do they have to lose? If they lose their operating license (actually, they already lost it), the class action suit will be a slam dunk (basically same complaints). On the other hand, if they get that revocation reversed, they might have a better chance of reducing the class action suit.

Of course, who actually pays this stuff? Not the perps involved, but the insurance companies, who then pass on the financial burden in the form of higher premiums for the other consumers.
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Offline Anonymous

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Re: SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #41 on: December 12, 2008, 02:56:05 PM »
CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT UPDATE
The lawyers appeared before Judge Robinson today.

Judge Robinson issued an order directing the parties and SLS' insurers to meet with a mediator to try to settle the case. He directed the parties to report back to him on February 8, 2009 regarding their progress.

The judge has not sent out the new class notices- he wants to wait to see if the parties have agreed to a settlement before sending out the new notices. If the case settles, the judge will send out new notices to all class members advising of the agreement. That way, they could decide if they want to join the case and accept the settlement or proceed against SLS on their own.

Of course, if the case does not settle, the new class notices will be sent out and the case would proceed.


THE APPELLATE DIVISION WEIGHS IN
The Office of the New York State Attorney General, which represents OMH, filed a motion in the Appellate Division to bar enforcement of Justice O'Rourke's order until the Appellate Division has had an opportunity to review and decide the appeal.

Earlier today, at about the same time that SLS was updating its Friends site to trumpet Justice O'Rourke's decision, the Appellate Division issued an order which bars enforcement of Justice O'Rourke's order.

The next step is for SLS' lawyers to appear before the Appellate Division on December 18 to show cause (1) why the appeal should not be heard at this time and (2) why Justice O'Rourke's order should not be stayed (not enforced) until the Appellate Division has decided the appeal.

Technically, this means that the OMH revocation hearing can go forward.

More importantly, in my experience, the Appellate Division grants orders of this type only when it is has serious concerns about the order issued by the lower court. I think this bodes very well for the appeal.

We all owe a debt of gratitude to the OMH and Attorney General lawyers who worked so hard to present this emergency application to the Appellate Division. The names on the papers are David Lawrence III and Pamela Tindall O'Brian. Thanks to you both, and to all who helped you out!!
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Offline Anonymous

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Re: SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #42 on: February 19, 2009, 02:17:42 PM »
lots of new stuff happening with the cases against sls.  the ny state attorney general has stepped in on behalf of the office of mental health and is fighting to close sls down.  a revocation hearing is currently underway as well by the state.  finally, the judge in the class action has ordered the parties to participate in mediation which has been scheduled for march 25th.  good stuff people.
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Offline Anonymous

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Re: SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #43 on: March 03, 2009, 11:09:56 AM »
So in short SLS is winning. They won the first round otherwise there would be no need for an appeal. The attorney general has no choice but to step in whether he wants to or not as the office of mental health is a state agency that got itself into trouble. They are pushing a revocation hearing with a judge that should have recused himself (have to agree with SayitAintSoJoe's arguments here: http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2008/05/02/rep ... udge-lake/ - different case but the arguments hold). Probably OMH's desperate attempt to get some positive result on their side. Lastly mediation hearings are standard fare in any lawsuit.
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Offline Anonymous

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Re: SLS in Brewster, NY?
« Reply #44 on: March 04, 2009, 07:42:04 PM »
Funny. From what I have heard the OMH has a solid case against SLS with substantial amounts of of evidence to close the facilities.

Ironically when you read the three pro-SLS blogs currently online they all talk about how SLS "won in court" or has been "vindicated".  This is so far from the truth and was created to intentionally mislead parents and loved ones of current patients as well as potential consumers.  This is a company who is being sued for false advertising as part of the many other allegations of abuse.  The short lived success these sites tout about literally backfired the day it was announced when the Attorney General got involved. You can read a news article about it here or by using Google to look for SLS Residential Sanction:  http://www.nunya.com/index.cfm/2008/11/ ... t-facility

The Putnam jugde that originally overturned the OMH's findings had that order stayed while it awaits appeal because the AG found that the judge could not have possibly read the 3,498 pages of evidence in the one day he had it prior to making his decision.  Again, three thousand, four hundred and ninety eight pages must have been read to consider the facts before a judge can make a ruling on a case he had no prior experience with).

Then SLS went back to that same judge on Jan. 20 and asked for his assistance in overturning the OMH Commissioners decision to deny SLS request for a new Hearing Officer at the Revocation Hearing.  The Judge said NO.  Further more this same judge DENIED SLS' request for a temporary restraining order barring the Revocation Hearing from moving forward while he reviews the OMH Commissioners ruling.  On Feb. 19 the Judge made his decision to dismiss SLS' lawsuit against OMH and said the Revocation Hearing will proceed no matter what.  This means the evidence and finding that SLS originally was able to get the Judge to throw out, is now back in the picture and being used as evidence to close the programs once and for all.

A lot more information regarding this can be found at the only blog that uses factual sources like government documents obtained by the Freedom of Information Act, as well as the media coverage. Even reputable law journals have discussed the case since the Federal Judge overseeing the class action lawsuit discovered that SLS developed a scheme to lie to and intimidate former patients from participating in the lawsuit. The worst of all though was that the owner actually called the facilities that some of the patients were out and tried to manipulate them to sign the legal opt0out notice on behalf of the former patient, which is not only a federal crime but would have prevented the individual from even knowing the case existed!

The staff have left.  The facility no longer has any medical doctor.  The owner, chief clinician and others have admitted under oath that they broke rules.  They were all found to have lied under oath.  They have been found to try and hide/destroy evidence and alter records.

The ship is sinking and I see prison in the future for some...

 :waaaa:
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