Human

Earth

Animal

Liberation

 

126 SW 148th St

Ste C100-422

Seattle, WA

98166-1984

 

(877)845-3232

 

E-mail Us!

HEAL

HEALíS MISSION STATEMENT

HEAL is an egalitarian network of activists self-empowered to plan events, create change, and make the world a better place for all life.  Our goals include the liberation of humans, nonhuman animals, and the earth!  We work in cooperation with like-minded organizations that put compassion in action!

Teen Liberty

Environment

Human Rights

Animal Welfare

HAVE A QUESTION?  CONTACT US!

Home

Prison Reform Human Liberation Earth Liberation Animal Liberation

  Teen Liberty Menu:

SEARCH THE HEAL WEBSITE

anasazi foundation

mesa, az

  Staff List and Background Information

HEAL SPECIAL REPORT:

anasazi foundation enrollment packet REVIEW

HEAL has some concerns regarding the Anasazi Foundation's (Anasazi) enrollment agreement including apparent unethical and/or contradictory terms.  We will be alternating between purple background and/or words for HEAL critiques and questions and a light pink with red words for the words of Anasazi in their enrollment agreement (as was downloaded from anasazi.org on September 18th, 2010).  HEAL will not repeatedly link to the enrollment agreement in full throughout this review, and, we advise readers to scroll back and/or open the enrollment agreement in a new window while reviewing our work for accuracy or if additional contextualization is preferred.  This is an independent review and if you are in need of legal assistance or advice, please consult with an attorney
Enrollment Packet (Page 1)

"ANASAZI Foundation's inpatient treatment program"

"ANASAZI is licensed by the Arizona Department of Health Services, Office of Behavioral Health and the Department of Economic Security, Administration for Children Youth and Families. ANASAZI is accredited nationally by Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (Joint Commission) and the Council on Accreditation of Services for Families and Children (COA)." [This portion was taken from anasazi.org/licensing.html on September 18th, 2010.]

"Social History" [The social history forms will not be linked to throughout this review.  You many wish to open the forms in a new window now if you prefer additional contextualization during this review.]

"Inform and prepare your child to enter the ANASAZI program."

"Your child may obtain up to three high-school credits for his/her participation in ANASAZI's 42-day program...Please contact Blueprint Education direction directly (   ) to enroll your child."

"Accompany your child on Admissions day (Friday) to complete paperwork, attend the Program Overview orientation, and meet your child's therapist.  Be prepared to participate in the 10-hour parent seminar."

Anasazi uses the language of a mental health care provider by stating it is an "inpatient treatment program".  However, it is not licensed as a mental health nor medical care provider nor does it appear to be regulated by HIPAA.  In researching Anasazi, HEAL found it was licensed solely as a juvenile group home in the state of Arizona.  According to Arizona law: ""Group home" means a residential setting for not more than six persons with developmental disabilities that is operated by a service provider under contract with the division and that provides, in a shared living environment, room and board and daily habilitation. Group home does not include an adult developmental home, a child developmental foster home, a secure setting or an intermediate care facility for the mentally retarded."  A "residential setting" appears to require an in-home setting with the necessary amenities.  There appears to be no system of regulation for wilderness programs in Arizona. 

In addition, Arizona law proscribes: "R9-33-102. Requirement for Licensure An applicant shall obtain a license to operate a group home from the Department before providing supervision or habilitation to an individual with a developmental disability in a group home. A license to operate a group home is valid for the: 1. Address indicated on the license, 2. Name of the licensee indicated on the license, and 3. Period of time indicated on the license."

By definition, Anasazi is a wilderness program that takes place on public lands and off-site of the home offices in Mesa.  Anasazi is licensed to run a group home at the location named on their license only. It does not appear to be licensed as a mental health facility or outdoor recreational program.

It also appears that the primary qualification for licensing is that the home/program be accredited by a valid accrediting agency.  The Joint Commission has been under fire by Congress for not protecting client safety rights in facilities/programs they accredit. In addition, NATSAP and the Council on Accreditation (COA) are membership organizations that do not provide proper oversight or regulation of programs they endorse/accredit/accept.

It is our concern that Anasazi and/or Arizona provide the appearance of regulation without real enforcement or oversight.  And, it appears that they will license programs outside of the perimeters of licensing guidelines.  This raises concerns both about Arizona's state policies and procedures AND Anasazi's representations of oversight where such oversight and regulation are in actuality, lacking.

We hope Anasazi requires parents to inform their child about the child's enrollment in the Anasazi program and that they enforce the requirement that parents participate in the program from the beginning.  On page 3 of the agreement, Anasazi claims such participation is required.  But, on page 26 of the agreement, it states "parents will have the opportunity to spend 3 days and 2 nights with their child in the wilderness."  This implies that the participation is optional.  This is contradicted in other portions of the contract that reiterate that at least one parent/guardian must complete the seminar(s) and accompany the child at the end of the program.

HEAL asks: Does Anasazi require that children enrolled be enrolled voluntarily? (The answer appears to be no.  There are provisions discussed below regarding a child's "runaway" or escape attempt and resulting efforts to recapture the child.  If a child is attempting to run or does run from a program, it implies that he/she is not in the program voluntarily.  This is an additional concern.)  Does Anasazi ever recommend families not inform their children of their upcoming placement in the program?  If so, does Anasazi recommend the use of "escorts" to transport a child to the program?  Affirmative responses to the last two questions would raise additional concerns as well as point to misleading and/or deceptive marketing practices.

Enrollment Packet (Page 2)

"Upon arrival, an ANASAZI TrailWalker will greet your child at the door and guide him/her through the admissions process.  This is the time to say goodbye to your child."

"Participation in this seminar is required for parents wishing to join their children for the final three days/two nights of their stay at ANASAZI."

"Suggested preparation for the Parent Seminar: Read Leadership and Self Deception and/or The Anatomy of Peace by the Arbinger Institute."

Parents should ask what their child's experience will be during the admissions process.  It appears a strip search is required. (page 16)  Strip searches are often traumatic for anyone to endure and if conducted without legitimate probable cause are considered violative of the civil rights of the searched individual.  How quickly will your child feel demoralized and/or dehumanized by the Anasazi process? 

The second segment above is a concern, because, again it sounds like parents can opt out of any participation in the program by refusing the seminars and avoiding participation in the final three days of their child's "wilderness experience".

One review of Leadership and Self Deception reads:  "The Arbinger Institute was founded by C. Terry Warner, Philosophy Professor Emeritus @ BYU. Faculty at BYU are required to maintain themselves in conduct that qualifies them for temple privileges, as well as requiring them to obtain yearly endorsements from their "ecclesiatical leaders".  Having read this book, I think it is very biased in its view of humanity, and reminded me of the "we are all sinners" view that evangelical christianity espouses. It COULD be beneficial--but it is TOO LIMITING in its simplistic formula for solutions." (Linked text appeared on the linked page on September 18th, 2010.)  This suggests a very heavy Utah-influence in Anasazi practices and procedures. 

Enrollment Packet (Page 3)

"ANASAZI accepts new clients every Friday throughout the year."

"Your child will receive and send mail each Wednesday.  Mail is restricted to family members unless you and the Shadow agree there are others who could assist in your child's progress."

"Parents are required to spend the last three days and two nights of the program with their child on the trail."

Anasazi suggests in other portions of the agreement that "emergency placements" are at times accepted at additional cost.  Such a policy appears to contradict the careful planning and appearance of legitimacy presented in Anasazi's enrollment and promotional materials. 

It is a concern that the child's contact with the outside world is being strictly limited and that those limits are determined with approval/denial authority granted to program staff.  Such limitations may violate the civil rights of the child. 

Again, it is clearly stated above that parents are required to spend the last three days with their child, but, as stated above, this appears to be optional in other areas of the contract.  This is a concern as the terms presented may not represent the full terms or other arrangements available and/or required by the program.

Enrollment Packet (Page 4)

"Ideally, all caregivers will be involved in all aspects of the YoungWalker's experience; in all cases, at least one person is required."

"If you elect to have the exam completed on the day of admission, there will be an additional charge of $170 for boys and $200 for girls.  Our staff will transport your child to the office of Deseret Family Medicine for the exam."

"Due to the nature of our programs, scratches, cuts, and abrasions are commonplace."

"The program fee is $395 per day.  A nonrefundable admissions/outfitting fee of $750 is also required.  All financial arrangements are based on a 42-day stay and must be made prior to admission...If your child's stay is extended beyond 42 days, the program fee is $365 per additional day."

Is the child included in the population from which the "at lease one person" requirement is required?  If so, this would mean that the requirements of parental participation are for public relations purposes only and are not indicative of the true requirements or practices of the program.

What is the "nature" of Anasazi programs?  Why are scratches, cuts, and abrasions (bruises) commonplace?  Many HEAL coordinators adventure outdoors regularly and these camping and hiking trips do not regularly result in bodily harm or injury.  Why are these injuries common under the supervision of Anasazi staff?

That makes the minimum fee for the entire 42-day program, $17,340.  For a non-profit, this seems like a pretty steep charge.  It is more than the minimum fee at some for-profit wilderness programs.  And, HEAL is concerned that the $750 "outfitting" fee may be paid to board-member, Dinah Lundell in her clothing business "Random Drifter, Inc."  If so, this suggests a possible conflict of interest.  Some HEAL folks are working on starting a 501(c)3 non-profit and personal benefit of board-members through monies obtained through the non-profit is illegal/not allowed to our understanding.  So, this may suggest something that authorities may wish to investigate.

Enrollment Agreement (Page 6)

"Court ordered?"

"Arriving from Home, Foster Care, Detention, Treatment Facility, Other?"

The above questions of the enrollment form cause concern.  They imply that Anasazi accepts adjudicated youth and children from foster care and detention centers.  They also imply that a child is not always informed of their placement in Anasazi ahead of time.  And, they imply that family participation is not required given that a child can be placed in the program without parental consent or authorization through the judicial or foster care system.  So, all of these implications suggest that Anasazi is trying to appear family-oriented, while operating in an arguably non-inclusive manner.  It further shows that the program is not voluntary for at least some of the individuals in the program.  And, this is a concern as corruption in the judicial system has shown problems with placements in private programs that deny children access to the outside world as opposed to placement in publicly run programs that at least require some oversight.
Enrollment Agreement (Pages 7 & 9)

"I/we hereby release ANASAZI from all liability that may arise from the release of the information requested to the below identified person(s), professionals, institutions, or agencies."

"I recognize that there is a significant element of risk in any adventure, sport, or activity associated with the outdoors...I assume full responsibility for my family and myself, including any minor children, for bodily injury, death, loss of personal property and expenses thereof, as a result of my negligence or my family's negligence."

Neither of the above passages are unreasonable.  However, additional liability waivers are required by other terms included on page 16 of the agreement.  Does Anasazi believe it is negligent of families to enroll in or participate in their program?  Would a court of law?  These are questions to consider in regards to this program.
Enrollment Packet (Pages 10)

"MEDIA RELEASE FORM"

"I hereby give permission to ANASAZI Foundation to video record, photograph, and/or audio record me and my comments in a taped presentation to be recorded and shown for educational, marketing, and/or public relations purposes including, but not limited to, public display on the ANASAZI Internet website(s)."

"The Client and/or family has the right to rescind consent for use up until a reasonable time established by ANASAZI before the recording or film is used."

HEAL finds it inappropriate for programs like ANASAZI to request and/or require the use of a child's name and/or likeness for marketing of the program.  The reasons are multifold and include the fact that the child is likely being coerced or forced to agree to this while under the complete control of the program. 

Also, it seems that they will not remove a former client's photo/video/likeness if it has already been put to use in their promotional materials.  This is an additional concern as many survivors of programs have reported that their photos are being used without their consent to promote programs they felt were abusive.  We also find the general practice of requiring promotional/marketing assistance from clients, prior to their experiencing the program and judging if it would merit such participatory assistance (especially without compensation) in the marketing of the program, to be unethical.

Enrollment Packet (Pages 11-13)

"All clients have the following rights:"

"If enrolled by the Department or a regional behavioral health authority as an individual who is seriously mentally ill..."

"To receive a referral to another agency if ANASAZI Foundation is unable to provide a behavioral health service that the client requests or that is indicated in the client's treatment plan..."

"To associate with individuals of the client's choice, receive visitors, and make telephone calls during the hours established by the licensee and conspicuously posted in the facility, unless:

              i. The medical director or clinical director determines and documents a specific treatment       

                 purpose that justifies restricting this right;

             ii. The client is informed of the reason why this right is being restricted; and

            iii. The client is informed of the client's right to file a grievance and the procedure for filing a

                 grievance."

"To privacy in correspondence marked confidential, communication, visitation, financial affairs, and personal hygiene, unless:

              i.  The medical director or clinical director determines and documents a specific treatment

                  purpose that justifies waiving this right..."

"To send and receive uncensored and unopened mail, unless restricted by court order or unless:

              i.  The medical director or clinical director determines and documents a specific treatment

                  purpose that justifies restricting this right..."

"To have opportunities for social contact and daily social, recreations, or rehabilitative activities; (Will have no access to telephones, recording, CD players)..."

"To be informed of the requirements necessary for the Client's discharge or transfer to a less restrictive physical environment."

"To receive, at the time of discharge or transfer, recommendations for any treatment needed when the Client is discharged."

It is a serious concern that Anasazi suggests it accepts children that are severely mentally ill.  It does not appear that they are licensed or equipped to manage children with serious mental illness.  And, taking children with such diverse issues, including: substance abuse, criminal activity, and severe mental illness, seems to create an environment of severe risk of adverse influences and/or harm and trauma for children with more moderate issues.

The listing of "rights" on these pages appear to be driven by requirements on Juvenile Group Homes by the State of Arizona.  The concern here is that children are to be given reasonable access to a telephone and that such access and the requirement of such access is to be communicated by conspicuously posting that requirement in the facility.  Since Anasazi is a wilderness program, posting it at the home office for the sake of the licensing agents to review and check-off may meet a technical requirement of the law, but, does not go to the purpose and intent of the law.  Further in the same list Anasazi admits that no child in the program will be given access to a telephone.  This certainly doesn't suggest that children are individually and specifically told why each individual child in each particular circumstance is denied access to a telephone.  This is a serious concern and shows at least some suggested violations of the laws, regulating juvenile group homes, are occurring.

How often does Anasazi refer to long-term residential treatment programs for children as an after-care plan?  What facilities does Anasazi refer to and are they known to be abusive and/or fraudulent?

On page 13, Anasazi suggests questions about treatment policies be directed to the Joint Commission, the Office of Behavioral Health, and Child Protective Services.  In contacting the Joint Commission regarding concerns, you would likely be redirected to the licensing department (Office of Behavioral Health) and Child Protective Services.  The licensing department will likely suggest you contact the Joint Commission and/or Child Protective Services.  And, Child Protective Services will likely suggest you contact the licensing department and/or law enforcement.  Law enforcement will generally not investigate claims about abuse that occurred more than 48-hours prior to the time of the report.  So, if your child gets a letter out reporting abuse, the time for reporting to law enforcement will have passed and everyone else will likely give you the run-around.  At least, that has been the experience of many dealing with serious concerns about child welfare responding to reports of abuse at wilderness and residential programs in the industry.

Enrollment Packet (Page 14)

"This policy is to provide Clients and/or families with a means to grieve alleged violations through a four-step grievance procedure..."
 

"PROCEDURE: At any step in this procedure, the Client may request the assistance in presenting the problem.

Step I: When a problem arises, the Client is encouraged to address/resolve that difference with the Therapist/Shadow.  In the event the problem is with the Therapist/Shadow and cannot be resolved; the Clinical Director should be notified.  If the Client does not receive a prompt answer or is not satisfied with the answer, Step II may be initiated.

Step II: To initiation this part of the procedure, the Client should contact the Clinical Director.  The Clinical Director will respond to the grievance in writing within seven working days from the receipt of the grievance.  If the Client is not satisfied with the response, Step III may be initiated.

Step III: At this level the Clinical Director will arrange a meeting between the Administrator, the complainant, and anyone who may have been involved.  The Administrator will respond in writing within seven working days from the first meeting.

Step IV: Grievances unable to be resolved by the Administrator may be submitted to one or all of the following:

The Joint Commission"

HEAL is deeply concerned about this "grievance procedure".  It appears it may take over two weeks before outside authorities are even made aware of any violations, if such step is ever taken.  And, if the incident involved abuse or criminal acts against the client, it may prevent the ability of proper authorities to effectively investigate and prosecute.  This is a serious concern.  Also, it seems if a child were being abused, that they would be left to the decisions of those who have a vested interest in protecting the abuser (if staff or other program client) at the expense of the victim.  This appears to be a procedure that protects Anasazi's interests and not the interests of children and families enrolled in the program.  Since the grievance procedure requirement of the State of Arizona is likely intended to protect the interests of children and families enrolled in programs they license, it suggests that this procedure may also be a violation.  The minimum stay requirement is 42-days.  And, that is 6 weeks.  If you give a two-week or more timeframe and during that time keep the child in the company of the person(s) alleged to have abused the child, how much opportunity does that give the alleged abusers to bully the child into silence or create symptoms of Stockholm Syndrome that make the child dependent on his/her abusers and therefore seemingly willing to explain away or forgive abuses?  It is not a good or effective policy for protecting the interests of children made vulnerable by the "nature" of the program. 
Enrollment Packet (Page 15-17)

"The sponsor represents and warrants that the sponsor...is the legal custodian of the Client with the right and authority to admit the Client into the ANASAZI program."

"ANASAZI agrees to provide the Client with a wilderness experience consistent with the ANASAZI program in which the Client is enrolled."

"...sponsor agrees to support the Client's activities in the ANASAZI program...and to cooperate with the ANASAZI personnel in working towards a successful completion of the program by the Client."

"All Clients accepted for the enrollment are accepted on the condition that they will complete the entire program.  The sponsor agrees that the Client shall continue in the program chosen until the completion of the program by the Client, as determined in the judgment of the ANASAZI program director, unless either party terminates this agreement by giving written notice to the other party."

"The sponsor hereby releases ANASAZI from any liability for any injury, illness, loss, cost, expense or other damages to the Client resulting from the involvement of the Client in the ANASAZI program."

"The sponsor agrees to pay and to indemnify and hold ANASAZI harmless from all costs and expenses incurred in connection with such medical or hospital care."

"Sponsor hereby consents to and authorizes ANASAZI to search the personal effects and person of the Client, and to confiscate any and all items not on the approved equipment list."

"All fees are considered to be earned upon admission."

"When there is any deviation to the program structure i.e. emergency admissions, additional trips to and from the trail at the sponsors request, etc an additional fee of $500 is required per event."

"ANASAZI is not responsible for the loss, damage, or destruction of the Client's personal property."

"The sponsor will be responsible for one-half (1/2) of all expenses incurred where the Client runs away during the program."

"In the event the Client's stay extends beyond 42 days, sponsor agrees to pay a reduced program fee of $365 per day ($2,555 per week) for the remainder of the stay.  Sponsor also agrees to pay for all additional expenses related to the extension."

"The sponsor has the right to withdraw the Client from the program at any time."

"In the event of a termination prior to completion by either ANASAZI or the sponsor, the parties agree that the sponsor shall not be entitled to a refund of any amounts paid, nor shall there be a reduction in the obligation for basic charges or other expenses due from the sponsor."

"Moreover, the parties agree that the Arizona law shall govern this agreement."

"Disclaimer: sponsor acknowledges and understands that ANASAZI has made no representations or warranties with respect to the results which may be achieved from the Client's admission to the ANASAZI program."

Parents may not have the authority to place their child in Anasazi's program and may wish to review the teen right's page for additional information to insure they are not violating the law by placing their child in the program.

What is the Anasazi "wilderness experience"?  This is a question that should be answered quite explicitly by Anasazi regarding their methods and practices.  The second quote above is too vague and suggests an intent to conceal the conditions of this program.

It is a concern that Anasazi requires complete support and cooperation from parents.  These terms resemble terms in similar contracts for other programs that require families obey the program and avoid questioning methods that they feel may be ineffective or harmful to their child.  This is a concern and coupled with the grievance procedures reviewed above; a very serious concern.

Anasazi follows up by refusing to take any responsibility for any harm to the child caused by the program.  Again, this shows a program that is concerned about their own interests as opposed to the interests of families they claim to serve.  These exculpatory clauses appear to be unethical and/or unconscionable. 

Parents have the right to waive their own rights, but, not those of their minor children.  This likely includes the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.  And, the Supreme Court recently ruled that schools cannot search students without probable cause and doing so violates the rights of the student.  Including the right to search the body of a child in seclusion without access to a telephone or outside help in the event of an abusive or violative search is a serious concern.  Since Anasazi infers that they accept adjudicated youth and youth from foster care, then they likely receive federal and state funds for doing so.  This suggests that they are not in a position to violate the rights of children in their program in this manner.  And, is another point of serious concern.

Anasazi requires you equip your child for the wilderness and denies any and all liability regarding any loss, destruction, or damage to the equipment they require you to provide.  It is a concern as these types of clauses leave the situation open to theft and loss of your personal property without any accountability to those in the best position to insure it is protected.

The additional costs associated with the program are included to show that they likely do accept new inductees on days other than Friday if you pay an extra $500. 

What is the average length of stay in Anasazi?  Do children often stay for longer than 6 weeks?  If so, how long?  If Anasazi is a non-profit and a family is dissatisfied, why do they believe it is fair to keep all monies you have already paid and demand payment of any additional fees for the minimum of the stay?

What are the typical results of the Anasazi program and how are these results and/or success rates determined?  What are families getting for their $17,000+?  Are they getting an expensive introduction to the teen program industry?  And, does Anasazi act as a short-term holding program until a long-term program is chosen and/or referred to by Anasazi?  Does Anasazi receive a pecuniary benefit from the outside programs to which they refer? 

Enrollment Agreement (Page 19)

"The physical exam must be performed by a licensed primary care practitioner who is informed as to the physical demands of participating in ANASAZI (i.e. backpacking and hiking from 5-20 miles per week, while carrying a 30-40# pack, in various wilderness terrains, in a variety of elevations and temperatures with sun exposure, primitive living conditions, etc.)"

Placing a child in a program where they may be forced to carry an extra forty-pounds up 20 miles per week in the wilderness seems very punitive and not therapeutic at all.  Carrying such extra weight while doing strenuous exercise for long-periods can cause permanent physical harm to growing bodies.  Parents should choose against Anasazi if they wish their children to grow up healthy and strong.  This is HEAL's opinion and we recommend against Anasazi.

"Social History" (Pages 3 & 4)

"Does the family participate in religious activities?"

"Does your child participate?"

"Please describe your child's participation in: Church/Temple/Synagogue attendance, Prayer, Reading (scripture. religious materials), Compliance with religious behaviors and values [and] Attitude towards religious leaders/clergy..."

"Does the child express enjoyment/satisfaction through participation?"

"Does your child believe in God?"

"To the best of your knowledge, is your child sexually active?"

"Is this a concern for you?"

"With one or multiple partners?"

"To the best of your knowledge, how involved is your child with pornography?"

The above questions would likely not be effectively answered by a parent and are very personal in nature.  Discussing these issues without the participation of the child is inappropriate.  Is Anasazi involved in pornography?  Do they believe in God?  Are they sexually active?  Have they revealed this to you or your child?  Is that appropriate?  In earlier documents, Anasazi suggests that they are not faith-based and/or that they welcome children from diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds.  Why do they need to know so much about your religious practices and how will this information be used by the program? 
SOCIAL HISTORY (Pages 7-10)

"When did you first notice that your child's behavior was changing?"

"What do you estimate has been the total cost of mental health/behavioral health treatment for your child prior to but NOT including ANASAZI?"

"After Care Treatment Plan

Check all that apply:

Boarding School         Therapeutic Boarding School           Residential Treatment Center"

Human beings, including children, change their behavior all the time.  Typing is different from talking and walking a different behavior than sitting.  This is too vague a question and really warrants qualification to be effective.

Why does ANASAZI need to know how much you spend on treatment?  Are they trying to gauge how much more you may be willing or able to spend?  Does this help them determine what program to refer to for their "after care" recommendations?  What programs does ANASAZI refer to and do they receive any incentives for placing children in those programs?

At this point, HEAL believes it would be best for families to avoid ANASAZI.  For parenting suggestions and alternative resources, please visit www.heal-online.org/parent.htm

 

Also See: Staff List and Background Information

 

HOME