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The Closing of Clover Bottom Developmental Center 20 Years in the Making

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posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:03 PM
I am NOT a writer, I am a thinker...which I feebly try to put on paper...
I’ve toyed with the idea of starting a thread on this for a month or so…
I didn’t know if it would be well received, if it interested ANYONE other than me, or if anyone really cared.
Today, I feel a sense of (more so than other days) responsibility to my fellow humans…A sense of right and wrong…A piqued sense of oneness…not sure why, maybe just Sunday musings

Anyway, my thread is about a lawsuit, the ensuing “years long” conclusion, and what (IMO) is a flaw in the plan that wasn’t initially intended or even considered by the brave and intelligent people who initiated the original suit.
Let’s start with this:

The Civil Rights of Institutionalized Peoples Act (CRIPA) was enacted into law in 1980, and enabled the Department of Justice to protect the rights of those individuals who were in the care of state institutions.[3] Such institutions include state and locally operated jails and prisons, juvenile correctional facilities, public nursing homes, mental health facilities and institutions for individuals with intellectual disabilities.[3] The law allows for the attorney general to intervene on behalf of institutionalized people whose rights may have been oppressed. This law was enacted to ensure the safety of those individuals who may feel uncomfortable reporting issues of abuse in these government run institutions.

CRIPA does not create any new rights. Instead, it allows the attorney general to enforce already established rights of institutionalized persons.
In 1989, families and supporters of folks with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities banded together to form “People First of Tennessee”.

In 1989, People First of Tennessee made a presentation on the subject of self advocacy to residents of Arlington Developmental Center. The residents voted to join People First.

For some of you who remember Pennhurst (I'll put you back there. I grew up close to there) in the day…here are some excerpts from the court briefs in the Olmstead Case…

On December 22, 1996 People First of Tennessee initiated a lawsuit against three “Developmental” Centers in the State.
The complaint alleged that a Department of Justice CRIPA investigation of the facilities in 1994 found a pattern of injury, abuse, and neglect, deficient medical care, a lack of activities, and a failure to provide educations to school-age children as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. It also alleged the use of unnecessary restraints, inadequate discharge planning, and failure to provide habilitation and training.

Link to Case Profile:
They (TPTB) were warned…

Dear -Governor McVherter: I as writing to advise you that we intend to investigate the clover Bottom Developmental Center, Nashville; the Greene Valley Developmental Center, Greeneville; and the Nat T. Winston Developmental Center, 3olivar, Tennessee, to deter further the constitutional and federal statutory rights of develop-mentally disabled individuals confined in these facilities are being denied. This investigation is pursuant to the: Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act, 42 U.S.C. § 19S7 et sea.

Some findings from that investigation:
More Findings

In 1990, at the request to the United States Attorney in Memphis, we began investigating conditions at the Arlington Developmental Center ("ADC"), in Arlington, Tennessee. Approximately 450 developmentally disabled children and adults resided at the facility. After several tours of the facility by our experts and many months of unsuccessful negotiations, we sued ADC for violating the federal statutory and constitutional rights of the citizens residing there. Allegations of verbal and physical abuse, as well as evidence of unexplained injuries and sham investigations, formed part of the case against the facility and its administrators. However, because of the limited ability of most of the residents to communicate, the tight control of ADC management over employees, the extensive familial ties among employees on the units, and poor or falsified documentation, we had difficulty obtaining specific information on individual incidents (e.g., who did this to the resident, on what day, and witnessed by whom?).

This link provides some evidence of those findings from the investigations although I will not directly quote them as some are quite brutal and hard to read…

Well, The lawsuit was won!
The “exit” plans were in place and on the surface it appeared that a great travesty of justice (1000s of years in the making!) was, finally, rectified (or in the process).
The Exit Plan

The first phase is comprised of eight responsibilities DIDD and TennCare must complete by December 31, 2015 in order for the lawsuit to be partially dismissed. The second phase requires the closure of Greene Valley Developmental Center in Greeneville by June 30, 2016. Upon closure, the lawsuit would be fully and finally dismissed.

THAT is taking a long long time to complete...Tennessee sure was given generously where time is concerned!
DIDD exit plan strategies
Person’s with ID/DD often face the challenge of mental disease/illness as a secondary diagnosis…I have to wonder if THIS was even a consideration…
Well, Clover Bottom has closed! THIS, in my opinion, is a WONDERFUL thing…only one left...

To see the looks on their faces, having spent years, decades,or since birth in an institution, when they are finally "allowed" to leave is priceless....
In my experience, older parents, at times, traditionally have been able to care for their ID/DD CHILD but, as that child ages and the parents, the problems can become insurmountable and the parent is left with no other option than “putting” that child in some sort of program, home, or institution as they ( the parents) are just physically or emotionally unable to handle it all anymore. In today’s world both parents feel the need to work and sometimes the other children suffer from a lack of attention (not attention as in being spoiled but, attention raising a child takes)

With all wonderful things there IS a downside…

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:04 PM
a reply to: TNMockingbird

Other things to consider…
Some of these folks have mental illness disease as a secondary diagnosis.
They are, quite often, in my experience seen every three months (that is the law).
They are met with for all of 15 minutes, asked a few questions, given a test for Tardive Dyskinesia and off they go to “untrained” or “NOT psychiatrically trained” ,uneducated (in diseases of the brain), folks who are just trying to work and support their families…
Their prescriptions are renewed and they are good for another three months.

A Direct Support Professional in the state of Tennessee is one of the lowest paid employment choices. Often being hired on as a “fresh out of high school” kid or you’ve run out of other options…MOST private companies in the state start new (inexperienced) folks at minimum wage…MINIMUM WAGE!!!!!
As a DSP you are required to provide quality daily living supports, administer medications, keep track of an individual’s personal funds, AND deal with both physical AND psychological diagnosis with little training.
So, now, we have people being deinstitutionalized (which IMO is a good thing!) and being released (freed) to organizations that offer little to no training in the mental health issues that these folks often face.
I don’t really have a conclusion. I just wanted to share and maybe have people realize that there exists a portion of society that too often has been shut away…”out of sight, out of mind” and that though, on the surface, things seem to be getting better…

BUT, are they really?

edit on 17-1-2016 by TNMockingbird because: (no reason given)

edit on 17-1-2016 by TNMockingbird because: (no reason given)

I wanted to link the Willowbrook story...

edit on 17-1-2016 by TNMockingbird because: clarify link

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:25 PM
Wow, this seems like an exorbitant amount of funds for the residents!

Next year, the cost of care for each remaining Clover Bottom resident is estimated at $1,400 per day, or $511,200 per resident each year. Providing care to the same individuals outside Clover Bottom is expected to save the state $100,000 per person each year.


Some of the piks of this place (on the inside) are just creepy. ... nevertheless a celebration is past due!!

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:31 PM
a reply to: ReadLeader

Yes! It is an exorbitant amount of money and some companies are making a ridiculous amount, as well....

THEY (companies) certainly aren't reinvesting back into the company OR are NOT investing in training...

edit on 17-1-2016 by TNMockingbird because: what the heck was I writing

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:35 PM
a reply to: TNMockingbird

In my state, there are investigations all the time into abuse at nursing, specialized mental health and assisted living facilities. It's an atrocitie to see how people can treat others that are in need of care....

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 04:54 PM
I remember going past Clover Bottom years ago (back in the late 70's-80's) when it was on Stewarts Ferry Pike in Donelson. The building and area was huge. There were always adults playing on the playground, swinging and stuff. It's sort of sad it's gone, they looked happy the people.
edit on 17-1-2016 by Staroth because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 05:00 PM
a reply to: ReadLeader

It is!

Those of us (humans) that prey on the weaker...
some will say...

survival of the fittest....
the strong will prey upon the weak...

IT is as it is meant to be, how it has always been...

It is so sad...

posted on Jan, 17 2016 @ 05:13 PM
a reply to: TNMockingbird

Until it happens to (second person here, so no flaming intended) someone YOU love, Mom, Dad, sister, bro,.....

The general public will not give a rats @$$.... sadly.

I saw this w/ my grand parents. ..... in a nursing facility at a young age......

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