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Messages - hurrikayne

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The Troubled Teen Industry / Re: Is my mom's punishment ok?
« on: April 26, 2009, 11:46:30 PM »
It is NOT okay for a parent to ask their teenage child to "strip down" for a spanking, no matter what is being used belt/or brush.  This parent obviously reacted emotionally to an upsetting situation, and should have taken a longer break to calm down before carrying out a punishment.  I think the length of time involved in the actual "punishment" here is a bit much as well, although the OP doesn't go into detail about the amount of force used, or whether welts or bruising were results of this action.  

There is a fine line between punishment and abuse, and the only person that can define whether the line was crossed based on the information given, is the person involved.  If the OP feels as if they've been abused, they need to talk to someone objective about it.  School counselor, pastor, someone with the capacity to provide help and not make the situation worse by taking one side or the other automatically.

Open Free for All / Re: A Recovery Bill of Rights for Trauma Survivors
« on: April 26, 2009, 04:03:32 PM »
Glad to hear it was of some help.  :D

Open Free for All / A Recovery Bill of Rights for Trauma Survivors
« on: April 25, 2009, 08:10:47 PM »
Some may find this helpful, I know that I have...

By Thomas V. Maguire, Ph.D.
Copyright 1995-97 Thomas V. Maguire, Ph.D. Ver. 3.0 (04/97)
All rights reserved, except that permission is hereby granted to freely reproduce and distribute this document, provided the text is reproduced unaltered and entire (including this notice) and is distributed free of charge.

By Virtue of Your Personal Authority You Have the Right to . . .

Manage your life according to your own values and judgment.

Direct your recovery, answerable to no one for your goals or progress.

Gather information to make intelligent decisions about your recovery.

Seek help from many sources, unhindered by demands for exclusivity.

Decline help from anyone without having to justify the decision.

Believe in your ability to heal and seek allies who share your faith.

Trust allies in healing so far as one human can trust another.

Be afraid and avoid what frightens you.

Decide for yourself whether, when, and where to confront fear.

Learn by experimenting, that is, make mistakes.

To Guard Your Personal Boundaries You Have the Right to . . .

Be touched only with, and within the limits of, your consent.

Speak or remain silent, about any topic and at any time, as you wish.

Choose to accept or decline feedback, suggestions, or interpretations.

Ask for help in healing, without having to accept help with everything.

Challenge any crossing of your boundaries.

Take action to stop a trespass that does not cease when challenged.

For the Integrity of Your Personal Communication You Have the Right to . . .

Ask for explanation of communications you do not understand.

Express a contrary view when you do understand and you disagree.

Acknowledge your feelings, without having to justify them.

Ask for changes when your needs are not being met.

Speak of your experience, without apology for your uncertainties.

Resolve doubt without deferring to the views or wishes of anyone.

For Safety in Your Personal Dependency in Therapy You Have the Right to . . .

Hire a therapist or counselor as coach, not boss, of your recovery.

Receive expert and faithful assistance in healing from your therapist.

Know that your therapist will never have any other relationship with you— business, social, or sexual.

Be secure against any disclosure by your therapist, except with your consent or under court order.

Hold your therapist's undivided loyalty in relation to all abusers.

Obtain informative answers to questions about your condition, your therapist's qualifications, and any proposed treatment.

Have your safety given priority by your therapist, to the point of readiness to use all lawful means to neutralize an imminent threat to your life or that of someone else.

Receive a commitment from your therapist that is not conditional on your "good behavior" (habitual crime and endangerment excepted).

Make clear and reliable agreements about the times of sessions and of your therapist's availability.

Telephone your therapist between scheduled sessions, in urgent need, and receive a return call within a reasonable time.

Be taught skills that lessen the risk of re-traumatization:

containment (boundaries for recovery work);

control of attention and mental imagery;

systematic relaxation.

Enjoy reasonable physical comfort during sessions.

Facility Question and Answers / Re: Roloffs
« on: April 22, 2009, 02:22:54 PM »
Thanks for your input, I think the main difference in experiences, however, is those that followed him, ran things MUCH differently.  It was a tough environment when he ran things, possibly bordering on abuse.  It was definitely abusive after he was gone.

Gwen, would you send me an E-mail at [email protected]?  


Facility Question and Answers / Re: Roloffs
« on: January 21, 2009, 11:41:37 PM »
Hey hoof!  How you doing?

Open Free for All / Re: Etnic Italian cooking...
« on: January 05, 2009, 12:09:03 AM »
Just the stench emanating from the hallway makes my stomach turn, don't think I could get close enough to it to freeze dry it.  BLEH.

News Items / Re: Author calls for end to residential program abuse
« on: January 05, 2009, 12:05:18 AM »
Different Ron Howard, follow the link...

Open Free for All / Etnic Italian cooking...
« on: January 04, 2009, 12:43:32 AM »
Okay, lemme just say that I appreciate spaghetti & pizza, as much as any red blooded American...but I am really tired of living in such close proximity to ethnic Italians.  They make this dish, which smells very similar to stinky sock soup...and it makes me ILL.  I have no clue what the hell they are doing down there, but it turns my stomach and I do not like it.  Damn it.  Okay, done ranting.  :)

News Items / Re: More programs shutting down
« on: January 03, 2009, 11:53:31 PM »
IMHO - abuse is abuse, regardless of whether it is paid for by our tax dollars, or by personal financing.  As for category...I don't know, I think I would lean more toward 'public' since the detainee would have gone to jail on the taxpayer's dime in the first place.

Thanks Brittany on the info re: Cleft of the Rock.

News Items / Author calls for end to residential program abuse
« on: January 03, 2009, 07:12:20 PM »
Author calls for end to residential program abuse
By Rebecca Nuttall | Published  12/31/2008 | Metro | Rating:
Author Ron Howard is hoping for enforcement of the “Stop Child Abuse in Residential Programs for Teens Act of 2008.” Until it is implemented and enforced, Howard sees little hope for the many children he says are being abused in residential programs across the country.

“A lot of people are just overlooking this whole thing. I’ve been preaching this for over a year now,” Howard said. “The problem with this bill is it has to be enforced and that’s gonna take manpower and more money.”

Though the bill was passed in the House of Representatives June 25, it is still awaiting approval from the Senate as well as the president. Howard said if the bill is enforced each incidence of child abuse can be assessed for up to $50,000.

“If you were to check around and try to find any success stories coming out of residential treatments you would find zero,” Howard said. “Parents need to understand their rights, and organizations need to be held accountable.”

Howard said children in residential programs are the victims of neglect as well as violent abuse that has sometimes led to death. In his book, “Children on Layaway,” he includes the personal stories of children who have suffered these traumas.

“There’s a mentality that runs the residential programs that these kids did something wrong,” Howard said. “They’re treating them more like inmates. If you treat a person long enough like an inmate, that’s how they’re going to respond.”

Another issue, Howard said, is that children with behavioral problems are put in the same homes as children who had to be taken from their parents because they were being abused or neglected.

“They mix them all together, which is one problem there. These kids that are being snatched out their homes after they’ve done nothing wrong, shouldn’t be put in a home with a kid that’s been acting out,” Howard said. “They should be separated. If you put a good child in with a bunch of bad kids, eventually that good kid is going to dissolve right in with them.”

In researching the backgrounds of criminals, Howard found many had been through residential programs as youths. “Where are the results?” Howard said. “There’s no concrete results coming to these kids. It’s all on paper, but when you get in the field you’ll find none of this is actually happening.”

Howard, who worked in a residential program and has a degree in developmental psychology, blames the lack of results on underqualified staff. He recalled one staff member who had a degree in cosmetology, and could not remember anyone who had a degree to qualify them for working with youths.

“They’re calling them ‘youth counselors’ but really they’re security guards. It looks good on paper and it makes the parents bring their kids to them,” Howard said. “Make them hire people who are qualified to do this kind of work.”

Howard said children might be afraid to report abuse because they are afraid of retaliation. Likewise, he said parents might be afraid to report abuse because they do not want their children kicked out of the program.

Larry McKinney, Holy Family Institute’s director of residential and clinical services, said his staff undergoes training to help keep abuse from occurring.

“Obviously our main line of attack is through training of our staff. I personally meet with our staff and let them know our kids have been in numerous placements before they got to us, “McKinney said. “We try hard to make them aware of the types of abuse they have been subjected to. We help them in understanding the background.”

McKinney said staff members monitor each other and know to step in when a staff member seems to be getting stressed and losing patience with one of the children.

“The other thing is too, if somebody does do something—and I have to admit that has happened from time to time—there is a statewide investigation,” McKinney said. “Kids know their rights. They all have child advocates who check in periodically.”

Although McKinney is not familiar with the “Stop Child Abuse in Residential Programs for Teens Act of 2008,” he said it might address concerns similar to the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act of 1975. He also said legislation passes by his desk frequently regarding child safety.


News Items / Patient's parent speaks out on dangers at Tampa Bay Academy
« on: January 03, 2009, 06:35:53 PM »
Patient's parent speaks out about dangers at Tampa Bay Academy

By Rebecca Catalanello, Times staff writer
In print: Saturday, December 20, 2008

TAMPA — Sharon Meyer listened with more than passing interest this week to news that an east Hillsborough County mental health facility was being shut down by the state.

She wasn't surprised.

Her 16-year-old daughter was among those living at Tampa Bay Academy. The girl had been there a year and, at least three times, the state has investigated claims of abuse or neglect against her.

The Department of Children and Families substantiated one claim — that a staff member at the Riverview residential treatment center choked the girl.

"My daughter is coming out of there 10 times worse than when she entered," said Meyer, founder of the Foundation for Large Families, an Internet support group for adoptive parents.

Meyer offered a glimpse of what it is like for parents who, at wit's end, turn to professionals for help, only to discover even more cause for worry.

Tampa Bay Academy, one of 45 residential treatment centers in the state, is fighting to stay open in the wake of findings by the Agency for Health Care Administration that the 20-year-old facility is rife with problems that include unreported sex assaults by minors.

The Agency for Health Care Administration ordered a moratorium on admissions there and, by Friday, had moved 17 of the 54 residents, agency spokeswoman Shelisha Durden said.

Andrew Rock, an attorney for the Academy, declined to respond to Meyer's statements about the school.

Rock appealed to the 2nd District Court of Appeals on Wednesday to stop the state's efforts to close it down, arguing in part that the claims are unfounded.

"While it's under the consideration of the court, we think it's appropriate not to try to litigate it in the press," he said.

Meyer said her daughter was admitted to the program after being diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, a condition that began manifesting itself about the age of 10. The illness eventually made it unsafe for the girl, who had been adopted at birth, to be around the other children in the family, Meyer said.

Meyer was thankful Tampa Bay Academy could help her daughter, who she believes to be a danger. At one point her daughter got into a scuffle with staff members, and one employee was punched and another pushed.

But in the time the girl has been at the facility, Meyer has had numerous occasions to question the level and quality of supervision and safety there:

• When the girl entered, she didn't have scars. Now, she has what Meyer described as nine large gashes on her arms.

• The girl became seriously ill after staff members administered Haldol to the girl, though the parents repeatedly advised it would cause an adverse reaction.

In April, the girl's father rushed to her aid and took her to an emergency room after being summoned to the campus by a staff member who said they couldn't reach any of the center's medical staff. Bob Meyer found the girl drooling and barely able to walk, a condition the parents said doctors attributed to the drug.

• Though the teenager has been there for a year, it was about five months before the family started receiving treatment reports from Tampa Bay Academy. It was six months before she started getting report cards, she said.

• Her daughter once disappeared from the facility for five hours.

• Her daughter had such easy access to medication that she repeatedly stole and took other people's prescribed drugs.

• Meyer said that on one occasion, she was advised that a former female staff member came back to the campus, kissed her daughter and told her that pictures of the girl decorate her house — a situation that prompted other staffers to intervene.

"I think it's even more widespread than they're reporting," Meyer said of the charges against the residential treatment center.

Terry Field, a DCF spokesman, said a cursory review of abuse and neglect investigations at the Academy turned up at least 30 complaints in the past year.

Though two pending 2006 lawsuits against Tampa Bay Academy allege child-on-child sex abuse at the facility, neither DCF nor the Agency for Health Care Administration said they were aware of the lawsuits until this week.

The Health Care Administration, which has been licensing state residential treatment programs since 2006, said its most recent investigation was prompted by an anonymous complaint.

State law does not require residential treatment centers to report such litigation to the licensing agency, said Health Care Administration officials Laura MacLafferty and Polly Weaver.

That's something state Sen. Ronda Storms, R-Valrico, said needs to change.

"There needs to be a thorough review — not just of this facility or of what went wrong," she said. "We need to analyze and assess the other facilities that are intensive therapy facilities. How can we prevent this in the future?"

Altogether, there are just 743 beds available in Florida for children under the age of 18 who require the level of intensive mental health care provided by residential treatment centers.

A firm number on the length of the waiting list was not available Thursday or Friday, but lawyers say the need is great.

Nancy Bostock, a Pinellas County commissioner who has personal experience navigating mental health treatment programs for kids, said the stories coming out of Tampa Bay Academy are worrisome to any parent who has felt the need to entrust their child into the care of professionals.

"Any time you put a lot of troubled kids together, you're going to have troubling behaviors," she said. "But that's why we sent our kids to (places like) Tampa Bay Academy."

Rebecca Catalanello can be reached at [email protected] or (813) 226-3383.


News Items / 7 Utah schools face accreditation woes
« on: January 03, 2009, 04:55:58 PM »
7 Utah schools face accreditation woes
Warnings » Some schools improved status, others declined.

By Lisa Schencker

The Salt Lake Tribune
Updated: 01/02/2009 07:47:49 PM MST

Seven Utah public and private schools face serious accreditation problems, according to a report the Utah State Board of Education will discuss Thursday.

The Northwest Association of Accredited Schools (NAAS) and the Utah State Accreditation Committee are recommending accreditation for the vast majority of Utah schools this year and want to place six on "advised" status, meaning they have problems that threaten their accreditation. They're recommending "warned" status for one other school, which is one step closer to losing accreditation than "advised."

High schools must be accredited in order for the credit they give students to be considered valid. Accreditation status is based on a number of factors including curriculum, counselor to student ratio and assessment.

In all, of 293 schools that applied for accreditation, 169 Utah schools were recommended for approval and 116 were recommended for approval with comments about areas to be improved. Many of the comments criticize schools for giving teachers excessive class loads.

Four schools that were placed on advised status last year -- Granger High, Hillcrest High, Provo High and Navajo Mountain High -- improved this year and will likely move back to regular "approved" or "approved with comment" status.

This year's report noted that Hillcrest and Provo made "good progress in reducing teacher loads."

Schools that will be recommended for advised status this year include: Rich High School; charter school Liberty Academy; the private Meridian School; and residential programs Renaissance Private Academy, Triumph Youth Services and Hightop Ranch School.

Karl G. Maeser Preparatory Academy, a charter school in Lindon, is being recommended for "warned" status. Schools that receive two consecutive "warned" ratings face loss of accreditation.

Maeser was given "warned" status because it didn't submit an annual report by a certain date, according to the report. Maeser headmaster Justin Kennington said the school has worked to comply with all other accreditation standards and parents shouldn't be concerned.

"It just boiled down to a question of getting the report in given the fact we were still reshuffling our administrative team," Kennington said. "We're doing everything else that needs to be taken care of."

Rich High was given a recommended "advised" status because its report was received late. Attempts to reach the school's principal Friday were unsuccessful. Charter school Liberty Academy received "advised" status because its report was "incomplete and difficult to understand," according to the report.

Liberty Managing Director Rob Muhlestein, however, said the school got advised status because it had a ninth grade last year but doesn't have one now. Only schools with grades nine and up are required to become accredited through the NAAS.

Muhlestein said the school decided to apply for continued accreditation anyway because Liberty leaders might still add a ninth grade next school year. The school now includes grades K-8.

"It's pretty hard to be accredited for 9-12 when you have no students," Muhlestein said.

Meridian School, which is private, earned a recommended advised status because it has "19 underqualified personnel," according to the NAAS report. Attempts to reach school officials Friday were unsuccessful, but the school's director of public relations said last year, when the school received a similar status, that all its K-6 teachers are state-licensed. Some teachers in the middle and upper grades, however, were not licensed but had advanced degrees or significant experience in the fields in which they taught, she said.

Meridian is also listed as a candidate member of the Pacific Northwest Association of Independent Schools, another accreditation organization.

Hightop Ranch School Director Justin Sorenson said he was surprised by his school's advised status recommendation and wasn't aware there were issues. Hightop was placed on advised status because of an incomplete report, and for failing to submit a staff list and credit policy, according to the report.

Attempts to reach the Triumph Youth Services director of operations and Renaissance Private Academy officials on Friday were unsuccessful. A state board of education committee will likely review and approve the recommendations at the board's next meeting on Thursday.


News Items / Tampa Bay Academy Counslor
« on: January 03, 2009, 04:41:04 PM »
Counselor charged in hit-and-run death of Clermont teen

Stephen Hudak | Sentinel Staff Writer
    December 24, 2008

Paul Wright, 43, faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted of a hit-and-run that killed a Clermon teen. (Hillsborough County Jail via Florida Highway Patrol / December 23, 2008)

LAKE COUNTY - A man who counseled troubled teens in the Tampa area could return to Lake County next week to face charges that he left the scene of a crash in May that killed a 14-year-old Clermont girl, prosecutors said Tuesday. Paul Wright, 43, also was charged Monday with tampering with evidence, a felony that accuses him of using spray paint to cover up damage to the vehicle he was driving May 15. The crash on County Road 565A killed Megan Hensley, who was walking on the dimly lit highway. Wright and his passenger, Deneen Rossa, 37, were headed to Rossa's home after a date in Clermont. Megan's mother, Rhonda Conard, said investigators told her Megan did not die instantly and might have lived if Wright had stopped to help her. Wright, a group adviser at Tampa Bay Academy, faces up to 30 years in prison.


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