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Messages - Eliscu2

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The following is an email I received from a United States senator.
Just so everyone is aware that you are being heard.
Dear Mr. Nilssen,

Thank you for your film, The Last Stop, which I watched this evening. It was extraordinary.

As a policy maker concerned about institutions for all people, and most recently focused on residential programs for children and youth, one of the biggest barriers to change is the belief that “no one else will take these kids.” Your film did such a good job of acknowledging the challenges that trauma, addiction and mental illness create for young people and those who try to support them. At the same time, it made it clear that such complexity is no excuse for such abuse. I’ve never seen this articulated as well as it is in your film.

I am glad that Èlan is closed. I’m heartbroken that the industry continues, and that elements of the program have simply been rebranded and hidden. As your film points out, announced licensing visits allow these problems and abuses to persist. Much abuse is hidden behind glossy brochures and just the right words. The programs and those who profit for them are directly accountable for the harm done to kids. However, our states are also responsible because our laws, rules and practices fail to regulate the industry. That must change, and I am committed to doing whatever it takes to make that happen. If I can ever be of assistance, please let me know.

Again, thank you and congratulations on a really phenomenal film. And I am so sorry for what you had to experience.

Senator Sara Gelser
Chair, Senate Human Services Committee

The Troubled Teen Industry / Re: Skakel's sentance is vacated.
« on: May 14, 2018, 05:17:07 AM »
This is a big Deal - Michael Skakel has had his conviction overturned by the Connecticut Supreme court - It is unclear , at this point if prosecutors are going to file for another trial.

I hope the Department of Justice looks into the deal - Connecticut CPS/CJJS had with Joe Ricci and the amount of money that state paid Joe for participating in his well protected by Maine folks -elected officials - Joes continuing criminal enterprise known as the Elan School- It ran for forty years - Connecticut sent thousands of children to Elan.

I just read this article in The New York Post where the Author referred to Elan as "a posh reform school in Maine" :o
It's in the opinion section.
Skakel’s tossed conviction just another example of Kennedy privilege

Elan School / The International Drug Policy Reform conference
« on: September 28, 2017, 04:28:47 PM »
For all those interested in attending a screening of The Last Stop at the Drug Alliance conference, please send Todd a message and he can get you a HUGE discount on attendance ($15 instead of $400 for the week) -If you live in the states of Georgia or Alabama-
Contact: [email protected]
It would be great to have some Elan Alumni and anyone else interested in the Troubled Teen Industry in attendance.
The screening will be at the CNN center in Atlanta, Georgia on Friday, October 13th.
Here is a link to their website:
The Last Stop - Documentary Trailer

Daytop Village / Re: RIP, Inculcated
« on: June 20, 2017, 01:05:53 AM »
I bet she was just really sad on the anniversary of Angela's death and took a few too many benzos. I will miss her forever. I believe she is in a better place. :o

Daytop Village / Re: RIP, Inculcated
« on: May 29, 2017, 01:16:32 PM »
I'm in shock

The Troubled Teen Industry / The Kids Nobody Wants
« on: May 05, 2017, 02:11:56 PM »
"The Kids Nobody Wants: Treating the Seriously Delinquent Youth" - McKenzie and Roos (1982)


1. Synanon (Tomales Bay, California).
2. Delancey Street (San Francisco, California).
3. Devereaux School (Santa Barbara, California).
4. Circle S Ranch (Salome, Arizona).
5. VisionQuest (Tucson, Arizona, and Denver, Colorado).
6. Provo Canyon School (Provo, Utah).
7. New Pride (Denver, Colorado).
8. Closed A(olescent Treatment Unit (Denver, Colorado).
9. Devereaux School (Victoria, Texas) .
10. Centerpoint (Danvers, Massachusetts).
11. Elan (Poland Springs, Maine).
12. Illinois State Psychiatric Institute (Chicago, Illinois).
13. Southwest Martial Arts Association (San Diego, California)

Elan School / Re: The Kids Nobody Wants
« on: May 05, 2017, 02:07:16 PM »
Elan, R.E D. Box 33, Poland Springs, Maine 04274
Some of the best features of the therapeutic community are set in the framework of a residential treatment program
with an accredited high school, in the Elan program, located in rural Maine.
 This 250-bed program was founded by Gerald Davidson, a psychiatrist, and Joseph Ricci, a graduate of a drug-rehabilitation
and self-help program which was to some considerable degree an offshoot of Synanon.
 It is very difficult to describe the theory and operation of Elan in a few pages; it has been articulated at length in their own literature.
 Residents live in group homes of thirty to forty, and attend school in these same groups. A great deal of sophisticated planning and screening has gone into structuring the residences along lines of educational ability, and the more advanced houses have produced
some first-rate graduates.
 There is also a major division between the kids who are placed there voluntarily by their upper-middle class parents,
who bear the cost of their stay, and the "state kids," who are mostly poor, inner-city delinquents.
The two groups are segregated.
 The theoretical view of the Elan resident is the "out-of-control" youth, or the child who has been loved "too well, but not too wisely." The emphasis is on breaking exaggerated emotional bonds to parents and others, which lead to "acting-out" behavior.
The goal is to force the child into accepting responsibility for his or her behavior.
This is done by creating a highly structured environment in which a certain kind of peer culture is created. This culture
forces the residents to monitor each other's behavior and confront each other with their failures. The organizational structure of each house is used to teach lessons to the residents. They run the entire residence.
Everyone is forced to move up the ladder and to move laterally into areas where he or she is guaranteed to fail and be demoted, or "shot down," several times.
This is designed to teach the capacity to tolerate failure and rise from it. There are various kinds of encounter groups. Some are confrontational in the extreme.
I sat in on one of these in which the residents took turns screaming at each other at the top of their lungs for over an hour.
After this was done, they began to tear each other apart in a more analytical way under the guidance of the group leader.
It was in many ways like the Synanon game in the lack of inhibition, the lack of any "safe" areas of privacy which may not
be discussed. However, it did have a formal leader, a trained therapist, which the Synanon game does not.
There are also primal groups, in which one resident becomes the focus of a group designed to lead him into re-experiencing
some of his most deeply repressed pain.
Here the other residents act as supports, and the therapist is like a guide, leading the resident deeper into contact with his feelings.
Dr. Davidson pointed out to me that in Elan, the kids administer rules made by adults.
This is not like the illusory power of an ordinary high school government; here they really have responsibility to run their own residences, but they must do it according to the comprehensive system established by the adults.
 The inevitable effect of doing so is the emergence of the therapeutic
community atmosphere, in which a positive, growth-oriented peer culture is created.
 Dr. Davidson said that he is "being driven crazy by advocacy lawyers," to the point where Elan has considered not taking juvenile court placements.
 These lawyers, he said, "feel that kids should like the place, shouldn't be harassed, and who want to be called if the kid doesn't like things."
The point is not that the kids should like Elan, but that they should learn and change there.
These lawyers sometimes work at the behest of parents who have been unable to keep the child in line themselves, but then feel compelled to interfere in the treatment process.
Dr. Davidson feels that excessive parental interference is highly disruptive and can cause great problems for the child while he is in the
Edward Morris, Elan's Director of Education, said that above all else Elan teaches its residents to "be objective," and to "stand up for yourself."
These are part of the Elan philosophy, a set of eight statements which are very explicitly transmitted, discussed by the residents, and used as a standard by which they can gauge themselves and measure their progress.
There is no trace of a value-free atmosphere.
Elan claims a success rate of 80-90% with the privately placed kids,and 70-80% with the "state kids."
This is based upon their own research in which they have done followups for five years on 92% of their graduates.
This is obviously a remarkable success rate.
 However, this placement is in all likelihood not open to San Diego juveniles in any large numbers, at least not through the juvenile courts.
 First, Elan is moving away from court placements because of the many legal squabbles which result from them.
 Elan is not eager to expand in size, and it is filled to slightly beyond Its optImum capacity as it stands.
Nonetheless, there is a great deal to be learned from Elan. It appears to be successful.
It uses elements of confrontation and encounter. It takes juveniles out of their element, and uses unconventional methods.
These factors need to be considered as San Diego decides upon which option, or options, to choose.
Treatment, room, and board at Elan cost $1 ,200 per month.
School fees are an additional $3,000 per year; so the total yearly program cost is $17,400.
The average length of stay is 16 to 18 months.

Elan School / The Kids Nobody Wants
« on: May 05, 2017, 02:02:06 PM »
"The Kids Nobody Wants: Treating the Seriously Delinquent Youth" - McKenzie and Roos (1982)


1. Synanon (Tomales Bay, California).
2. Delancey Street (San Francisco, California).
3. Devereaux School (Santa Barbara, California).
4. Circle S Ranch (Salome, Arizona).
5. VisionQuest (Tucson, Arizona, and Denver, Colorado).
6. Provo Canyon School (Provo, Utah).
7. New Pride (Denver, Colorado).
8. Closed Adolescent Treatment Unit (Denver, Colorado).
9. Devereaux School (Victoria, Texas) .
10. Centerpoint (Danvers, Massachusetts).
11. Elan (Poland Springs, Maine).
12. Illinois State Psychiatric Institute (Chicago, Illinois).
13. Southwest Martial Arts Association (San Diego, California)

Elan School / Re: Justice for Phil Williams?
« on: March 28, 2017, 09:03:37 PM »
To continue with seeking justice for Phil Williams -

Elan Survivors Inc., is trying to organize a $50 million civil suit against the state of Maine on behalf of former students and residents.

Only 50 Million?

Open Free for All / Re: Resuscitation
« on: August 23, 2015, 02:29:25 PM »
Ahhhh Spybook.
The world booking room.
I noticed there was something creepy way back when I first signed up.
The URL was 4 digits of my local police dept. :o

 ;) I admire your faith in the "Justice System".
You have not spent enough time in the Courtroom.

Elan School / Re: A Reliable Source
« on: January 31, 2015, 12:01:42 AM »
You know Felice - this comment  that Mr. Gutfinski posted on your Video ( which still rocks like no bodies business ), he  has also posted his comment on Mister  Bill Diamond's amazon  book page as a review of Mister Diamonds book called " the evil and the innocent "

lol- a reliable source indeed.



Link to above mentioned comments:

Elan School / A Reliable Source
« on: January 22, 2015, 01:18:29 AM »
This is a comment received today on my Elan School video.
Although the school is closed many former residents still struggle for Justice.

Roy Gutfinski
"I retired in 2013 after over 34 years as a Probation and Parole Officer for the State of Maine.  Since I am now a "free man" and can speak the truth, I will make a few comments about Elan.  During my first five years as a PPO, I supervised juveniles as well as adults and I worked with a few young people who were "students" at Elan.  I found the Elan administration provided very little communication concerning any of my clients at that facility.  One time I wanted to visit a boy on my caseload who was at Elan and was told they needed time to "prepare" for my visit.  After a couple of years on the job I had learned of several incidents of abuse at Elan against my clients and others.  When I went to my supervisor to report the abuse, I was told that Elan was a "sacred cow" and that officials in my department (Mental Health and Corrections) as well as Human Services and Education were "in tight" with Joe Ricci and the Elan School and that if I reported a problem with Elan I would become the problem.  I was told by one official in my department that anyone causing problems to Elan could "disappear like Jimmy Hoffa."  After "mandated reporting" of child abuse became law in Maine, there were several incidents of abuse at Elan reported to Child Protective (Department of Human Services) but they were "buried" and never given the proper investigation and follow up due to Mr. Ricci's political connections in Augusta.  Frankly, I am relieved that Elan has finally closed its doors and that more and more former Elan residents are having the courage to come forward.  Although Joe Ricci himself passed away in 2001, there are other former Elan administrators still around.  Bill Diamond, Maine state legislator, was Elan's "Director of Government Relations" and was instrumental in defending Elan from scrutiny.  Mr. Diamond claims today to be an advocate for abused children but his former association with Elan makes one wonder."

Elan School / Another BS ELAN Documentary
« on: March 22, 2014, 02:48:41 AM »

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