Author Topic: My experience at Three Springs New Beginnings  (Read 32796 times)

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Offline Che Gookin

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Re: My experience at Three Springs New Beginnings
« Reply #15 on: September 19, 2010, 08:05:22 PM »
3 Springs, so unoriginal it isn't even funny. Actually, that's a sad testament for most of the industry. Same shit, different wrapper.. over and over again. Defies my imagination how these new fish think they can do it better, when in fact they are doing the same old shit over again.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Hedge

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Re: My experience at Three Springs New Beginnings
« Reply #16 on: October 03, 2010, 07:08:27 PM »
I am crossposting this from another thread: http://

I've gone into detail about my experiences in another thread. I attended Three Springs in 1997 and 1998.
But here is a quick list of the abuses that were most obviously against the law:
* Sexual abuse. My roommate was sexually abused by a staff member. I would pretend to be asleep when he would come in at night. Another girl was sexually abused by another staff member.
* Physical abuse. Kids were beaten, usually during the "restraint" process, since the physicality of the restraint worked well for covering it up as accidental. I was beaten as a direct consequence for reporting abuse, in an incident involving two staff members and one peer.
* Deprivation of food. Food at the group home was severely rationed, and we ran out on many occasions, with no possibility of getting other food until the next week. (Not even stale peanut butter sandwiches.)

For a more thorough list, here are a list of violations against the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child committed by Three Springs. (The full document can be found at http://
Article 9, Statement 3: States Parties shall respect the right of the child who is separated from one or both parents to maintain personal relations and direct contact with both parents on a regular basis, except if it is contrary to the child's best interests.
I was not permitted to speak to either of my parents upon admission to Three Springs. It was not in my best interests to have contact with my father other than by letter, but contact with my mother remained restricted.
Article 13, Statement 1: The child shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of the child's choice.
Noncom/bans is an infringement on this right. Freedom of expression is a right, freedom of choosing one’s own library books is a right, access to writing materials is a right: all of which were broken.
Article 14, Statement 1: States Parties shall respect the right of the child to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.
The only religion we had access to was monthly visits by a local church, who would lead worship songs. Our lack of freedom of thought has been discussed elsewhere on Fornits with more eloquence than I have on the subject.
Article 15, Statement 1: States Parties recognize the rights of the child to freedom of association and to freedom of peaceful assembly.
Noncom, again, violates this right.
Article 16, Statement 1 and 2:  No child shall be subjected to arbitrary or unlawful interference with his or her privacy, family, or correspondence, nor to unlawful attacks on his or her honour and reputation. The child has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.
Censorship of letters, hanging up the phone when “inappropriate/manipulative” things were said on the telephone, and being watched in the shower are all violations of this right.
Article 19, Statement 1: States Parties shall take all appropriate legislative, administrative, social and educational measures to protect the child from all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation, including sexual abuse, while in the care of parent(s), legal guardian(s) or any other person who has the care of the child.
No matter how many times the staff supervisor was reported as physically abusing children, he was never suspended or fired. The lack of food in the group home was ongoing.
Article 20, Statement 1: A child temporarily or permanently deprived of his or her family environment, or in whose own best interests cannot be allowed to remain in that environment, shall be entitled to special protection and assistance provided by the State.
Because children who are no longer with their parents are considered a specially protected group, there should be more, not less, regulation of the institutions that house them. The lack of ability to report abuse without consequence violated this right.
Article 24, Statement 1: States Parties recognize the right of the child to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health and to facilities for the treatment of illness and rehabilitation of health. States Parties shall strive to ensure that no child is deprived of his or her right of access to such health care services.
We did not have regular health care. Another girl who attended Three Springs with me needed an operation but did not receive it. She continues to suffer consequences of that medical neglect.
Article 25: States Parties recognize the right of a child who has been placed by the competent authorities for the purposes of care, protection or treatment of his or her physical or mental health, to a periodic review of the treatment provided to the child and all other circumstances relevant to his or her placement.
Some of the kids placed at Three Springs had been there for years without treatment review by an outside authority. I did not have contact with my social worker or lawyer even once during my time at Three Springs.
Article 27, Statement 1: States Parties recognize the right of every child to a standard of living adequate for the child's physical, mental, spiritual, moral and social development.
Lack of nutrition, physical and sexual abuse, little to no education, all violate this right.
Article 31, Statement 1: States Parties recognize the right of the child to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child and to participate freely in cultural life and the arts.
This one made me almost laugh. We had no television. We had no crafts. We had a small amount of “outside time.” We had no access to music. Cultural life and the arts? Are you kidding me?
Article 32, Statement 1: States Parties recognize the right of the child to be protected from economic exploitation and from performing any work that is likely to be hazardous or to interfere with the child's education, or to be harmful to the child's health or physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development.
Cleaning up another person’s shit smeared all over the walls and floors of an isolation room with inadequate cleaning materials was certainly hazardous to our health.
Article 37b: (b) No child shall be deprived of his or her liberty unlawfully or arbitrarily. The arrest, detention or imprisonment of a child shall be in conformity with the law and shall be used only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest appropriate period of time;
For many children, our imprisonment in Three Springs was not a measure of last resort, and no one was there for the shortest appropriate period of time. Years in a locked treatment facility is not the shortest appropriate period of time for any adolescent who has not committed a crime.
Article 37c: (c) Every child deprived of liberty shall be treated with humanity and respect for the inherent dignity of the human person, and in a manner which takes into account the needs of persons of his or her age. In particular, every child deprived of liberty shall be separated from adults unless it is considered in the child's best interest not to do so and shall have the right to maintain contact with his or her family through correspondence and visits, save in exceptional circumstances;
Visits and correspondence were “privileges” that could be taken away, rather than rights that were upheld.
Article 37d: (d) Every child deprived of his or her liberty shall have the right to prompt access to legal and other appropriate assistance, as well as the right to challenge the legality of the deprivation of his or her liberty before a court or other competent, independent and impartial authority, and to a prompt decision on any such action.
I did not have the ability to contact my lawyer, as the communication restrictions were in place. Theoretically, if she had contacted me, I could have had uncensored communication with her, but that never happened. My inability to contact her violated this right.
Article 39: States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to promote physical and psychological recovery and social reintegration of a child victim of: any form of neglect, exploitation, or abuse; torture or any other form of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment; or armed conflicts. Such recovery and reintegration shall take place in an environment which fosters the health, self-respect and dignity of the child.
Most of the children placed at Three Springs had already been victims of sexual violence, or physical violence or neglect in the home. For us to receive more abuse from the people that were supposed to be protecting us damaged so many of us. When children are abused by people who claim to be acting in the interests of psychology, they impede the future ability of those children to seek and receive appropriate psychological help. This is, to me, the saddest way our rights were violated.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »