Treatment Abuse, Behavior Modification, Thought Reform > The Troubled Teen Industry

Wingate wilderness - investigation thread


Some sources speak of their closure. It is not known if the program also closes Expanse Wilderness. They seems to have been affected by the lawsuit after a rock climbing accident.

Here are some testimonies from former victims found on Yelp:

--- Quote from: Becca O. ---I went here while I was 15-16 for 3 months 2017-2018.  I will say that it is better than the abusive boarding schools, however you are not being told the truth as a parent. You only get therapy once a week for less than 30 minutes, they made us smile in pictures while we were covered in feces, dirt and throw up and if we refused, our therapist would tell us that we would have to stay out there longer. If we couldn't start a fire we would starve,  Often times kids would "double dragon" (throwing up and diarrhea) as we called it due to disgusting drinking water and malnutrition. If you were injured you wouldn't seek proper care. This is a universal experience at least in there adolescence program. Please be careful where you send your children. Especially in Utah, the laws are messed up.

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--- Quote from: Jocelyn T. ---Please do not send your child.  My son was neglected, abused, left dangerously dehydrated for days.  Was diagnosed with lithium toxicity and severe dehydration (dangerously low levels) and spent 10 days in ICU and hospital at a children's hospital. This was 3 weeks into the program. His feet filled with splinters and blister on top of callused blisters.  Now he has PTSD and on going medical monitoring.  This place is dangerous.  If you receive a call that your child was taken to the local hospital for whatever reason and are told NOT to come out I cannot stress enough you better get out there to make sure your child is getting the proper care.  I flew out to find my son in a bed laying in his urine, struggled to talk, walk, eat.......and all they wanted to do is hydrate him and put him back in the field.

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--- Quote from: Gabriella B. ---child abuse. if you're a parent thinking about sending your child here, please reconsider. this may irreparably damage your relationship with your child, as well as subject them to abuse and neglect. i contracted shingles here as an adolescent and was left untreated for 3 weeks. my therapist was homophobic. a past clinical director had been reportedly accused of sexual abuse and has been described as "cruel". many founders and notable staff have histories and connections with other, infamously abusive programs.

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--- Quote from: Anna K. ---This place doesn't deserve one star. It doesn't even deserve zero.
I went to Wingate when I was 16.
Staff joined in in making fun of me. A sex addict was the leader for our group of girls. He got mad at me for wearing a bra and underwear into a swimming hole because it turned him on. My group all took a staff members adderall. We were taken to the home of a man who had not had a background check. Staff talked about doing drugs. A group of boys took lsd together. I was made to carry 50lbs of weight at 75 lbs, even though you legally can't wear more than 30%. A girl had been there for 8 months even though there is a legal limit for how long you can stay. A boy broke his leg from falling off a cliff while watching us change. Staff brought in contraband. I mostly just experienced emotional abuse. Staff would tell me I was lying when I wasn't. They would tell the other campers that they were going to leave soon, then tell me that I would be here a while. The other campers stole all of my stuff and the staff allowed it because I was being difficult, and the other campers should have my stuff to make up for it. One staff member was called "jack off jake" for mastrubating in his sleeping bag. Our health was not taken seriously. For the whole time I was there, I was vomiting and pooping blood. I was not ever allowed to receive medical attention. This was a couple of years ago, and to this day, I have digestive issues.
The staff literally told us that the point of the program was to break us to get us to comply
This is only a small portion of everything wrong that has happened there.
I have been to many places and this was the worst. Please do not send your child here. They will not be safe.

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A bit about the lawsuit:


--- Quote ---Two weeks into Wingate's program, Jacob and six other youths went hiking, accompanied by two Wingate staff members. Id. During the hike, the lead staff member temporarily left the group.  Id. The remaining staff member let the youth, at their request, climb a "seventy-foot-tall, snow-dusted rock formation." Id. at 591. The staff member provided no climbing gear, training, or physical assistance. Id. at 591-92. Jacob and three others reached the top, "but Jacob and at least one other boy found it much more difficult to climb back down." Id. at 592. While Jacob was struggling to descend the rock formation, the lead staff member rejoined the group. Id. "Neither staff member offered Jacob any physical assistance, but one of them advised Jacob to follow a certain route down. As Jacob tried to do so, he slipped on the snow and fell approximately twenty-five feet to the ground, landing on his left knee." Id. Jacob's knee shattered. Id. at 591.

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