open letter & invitation
for Behavior modification Industry
HEAL is taking this
opportunity to make, explicitly known and understood, our invitation to
behavior modification programs to submit requests to HEAL for dialogue
regarding our concerns and their wishes to see our website changed or
edited. We stand by the content on our website. However, we
are very reasonable people and have written an open letter (click
here) to the behavior modification industry (including individual
programs) detailing the guidelines for interaction and discussion
between our network and themselves. These guidelines are detailed
on pages throughout our website as well. But, because of recent
Rogers of Abundant Life Academy and others, we felt it was time to
make our policies and position on these issues boldly explicit. If
you are a program that wishes to engage in legitimate discussion with
HEAL and/or the HEAL network, please read our letter at
www.heal-online.org/invite.pdf for important details.
HEAL: Special Report--Communicating with Programs
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Page
who wish to submit requests to HEAL to edit/modify the HEAL website(s),
must be in the following format and sent to
firstname.lastname@example.org or HEAL,
126 SW 148th St, Ste C100-422, Seattle, WA 98166-1984:
(Example: Should you wish for
the page you are currently on to be edited/modified, you would use the
link shown. You can find the location/link by looking in the
"Address" field of your internet browser. You can copy/paste the
link into a message by "right-clicking the "Address" field", then
"right-clicking "copy", and then move to the body of a word document or
e-mail and "right click "paste". This will place the location of
the text you wish to see modified on the document/e-mail form.)
Text/Quote: You will need to copy and
paste, using the directions above, the text of a HEAL webpage, article,
or commentary into this section. This text should include what you
wish to see edited or modified.
Request/Suggestion: This section you
will use to make a polite suggestion regarding changes you believe would
assist HEAL in providing the most accurate information available.
HEAL will respond to serious inquiries only and
will not respond to unreasonable requests.
www.heal-online.org (entire website)
Text/Quote: Entire website.
Everything. ALL OF IT!!!
Request/Suggestion: You are a bunch of crazy
wacko idiots. Shut up and take your stupid site down.
Unreasonable and/or harassing requests will not
receive a response, but, may be posted as examples of "what not to do"
on the HEAL site should they be forthcoming.
HEAL has received numerous requests from programs
and their staff over the years to change/edit our website. Some
programs have willingly worked with HEAL to clear up misunderstandings.
But, most have been secretive, antagonistic, and even hateful. Due
to recent events, we have decided to make our invitation to programs
clear and to create a space for our concerns (HEAL's and the Industry's)
to be discussed in an open manner that will assist in providing accurate
information to mental health consumers.
Due to the dishonesty and bold cowardice of Provo
Canyon School/UHS of Provo Canyon, we take this opportunity to share
with you one of the quotes Provo Canyon claims is false in their
harassment suit against HEAL, followed by the proof that said quote is
UHS of Provo Canyon claims the following is
false: "In addition, Provo Canyon School's "new owners",
Universal Health Services, has many skeletons in their closet regarding
abuse... and wrongful death at facilities they operate.
Click here to learn more about UHS.
" The link is to an
external website unrelated to HEAL that records abuses and violations at
UHS facilities. Also see:
www.heal-online.org/chad.htm (and all articles associated with it).
The links provided evidence that everything in that sentence is true.
So, you can see why we have difficulty believing anything the industry
says about itself or our web content. In fact, Provo Canyon School
at one point
Angela Smith for sharing her experiences online through the HEAL
website(s). The truth is consistent. Provo Canyon is
At this point, it should be quite clear that
HEAL has made and continues to make an honest effort to provide the most
accurate information available to the public. We believe programs
that are honest and reasonable will contact us respectfully and that
those who engage in fraud and abuse will continue to lie and deny.
We have responded to every remotely and/or
arguably legitimate request submitted by programs and their staff.
And, we will continue to do so. Since this is new, we will not be
adding old requests to the list below. But, we will add all
legitimate requests to the chart below and assist in keeping a record of
any and all legitimate efforts made by programs to clarify or resolve
areas of concern.
||Location/Link and HEAL's Response
|The ChalleNGe Academy (sample)
||The ChalleNGe Academy programs are 100%
voluntary and no child is accepted who does not enter
voluntarily. This program is run by the National Guard and
is not a private, for-profit, involuntary program. (sample)
HEAL removed the
majority of ChalleNGe Academy programs from our watchlists.
There were a few incidents in ChalleNGe Academy programs on our
watchlist, but, given the details provided by the programs and
our investigation results, we found that there was not a
substantial basis for including the majority of the ChalleNGe
Academy locations on our watchlist. (sample)
Arrow Apex (WA)
HEAL believes Straight Arrow Apex is
closed. We have asked for clarification on this due to the
e-mail message. But, the phone number was disconnected for
this program and there is little to no new information regarding
this program online.
A seasonal employee with Straight
Arrow Apex contacted HEAL on February 12th, 2011. The
issues raised are as follows:
* Straight Arrow Apex is a
working organic farm.
* All meals served are healthy.
* The young men/"students" work the farm and it is hard,
uncompensated work. Employee assures the work is not
* The program has only 3-5 "students" at a time.
* The average stay is 3-9 months.
* Employee claims,
choose to be there unlike many of the other programs out there
that serve youth under 18. Thus, a student is free to leave
when they want to and often are provided a ride to the
airport/bus station if it is there choice to leave."
* Communications with the outside world are monitored. The
employee claims the monitoring is "minimal".
Employee comment, "I totally support you in bringing clarity and
transparency to a field that for too long has been clandestine
and it is also important to support those that are doing good
|HEAL replied to the seasonal employee of
Straight Arrow Apex. We asked for a copy of the
student/parent handbooks and a copy of the contract. We
request these items so we have evidence that the claims made by
the program regarding it's practices are supported by
HEAL has no reason to believe Straight Arrow Apex is not a
working organic farm.
HEAL has not received any reports suggesting Straight Arrow
Apex serves imbalanced or unhealthy meals.
HEAL is concerned that this program uses the "students" as
field hands and labor without compensating them for their work
and while charging the families/individuals. This seems
highly unethical and raises serious concerns.
HEAL included the average number of students and length of
stay for informational purposes only.
HEAL would be appeased if Straight Arrow Apex is truly
voluntary. However, the monitoring of communications and
the remoteness of the location raise concerns regarding the
ability of young men to leave once they have arrived.
Also, the use of the phrase "often are provided a ride" suggests
that there are times when young men who wish to leave are not
provided a ride or assistance in leaving and given the isolated
nature of the farm location, this is a serious concern as well.
Employee replied to HEAL's request on February 12th, 2011
stating he hadn't worked for the program for a couple of years
and could not verify whether or not it was still open. He
further stated that he was unable to provide any handbooks or
other documentation on the program. HEAL remains open to
discussing the concerns presented.
Living Well Transitions (CO)
A director of Living Well Transitions e-mailed HEAL on
February 16th, 2011. The director stated, "I’d be happy to
discuss with you our program. I respect the work you are doing
to protect kids, and would love the opportunity to speak with
you about our work – which is also very much about liberation."
Question/Concern: Living Well Transitions does not believe it
belongs on the HEAL Investigate list. Director has offered
to discuss the program with HEAL.
different director of Living Well Transitions e-mailed HEAL on
March 5th, 2013 with similar sentiment and request as initial
contact in 2011. HEAL responded with the same offer as
provided at right.
|HEAL replied to the e-mail message from Living Well
Transitions. We have asked for copies of contracts,
waivers, handbooks, and any privilege/consequence system and how
it is applied.
We have also asked a few ice-breaker questions
and we have promised and will keep the promise to review the
requested materials upon receipt and contact Living Well
Transitions with any questions/concerns prior to publishing any
review online. We have also stated and promise that if the
documentation requested satisfies our questions/concerns and/or
Living Well Transitions effectively addresses those
questions/concerns, that we will remove Living Well Transitions
from our preliminary investigation page and from our website.
This is with the exception of keeping a record here of the
discussion and resolution of issues raised.
As of March 8th, 2013 HEAL
has received no response to our request for documentation.
Performance Institute (CA)
WHAT NOT TO DO IF
YOU WANT HEAL'S
HEAL received an
from attorney Monty Amyx
on behalf of Optimum
Performance Institute claiming that
our website is
defamatory and that they will pursue legal
action unless we
remove them from our site.
|HEAL replied to Monty Amyx directly regarding OPI.
And, we explained our concerns and the method by which OPI can
request review and/or removal from the HEAL website. We
also explained that choosing to contact us in the manner chosen
only reinforces our concerns regarding the use of intimidation
and coercion by OPI and/or their representatives. If OPI
is willing to harass the general public in this manner, what
protections can possibly be in place for those under the locked
24/7 supervision of OPI?
HEAL also submitted a
to the California State Bar regarding the unprofessional and
harassing message we received from Monty Amyx. Readers may
find it of interest that a Minnesota attorney attempted a
similar action on behalf of a Montana program last year.
We responded similarly. And, the attorney disclaimed any
association with their previously claimed client and that
program is now closed. Please be reasonable and respectful
when communicating with our network. Thank you.
received no response from
OPI nor Monty Amyx as
SDAlliance for Drug Free Youth
Issue/Suggestion: Please remove action alert regarding
Aspen Education Group and the Tune in to Your Teen Forum.
|HEAL posted an action alert on March 10th, 2011
to contact SDAlliance for Drug Free Youth to request they
un-invite Aspen Education Group to their parent forum.
Resolved: SDAlliance for Drug Free Youth uninvited
Mike Robertson (Aspen Education Group) after reviewing the
We thank SDAlliance for quickly and respectfully
addressing our concerns and resolving this issue.
||Siggs sent us a vulgar message. We are
posting the edited version below. To read the unedited
His Message (edited due to vulgarity):
"----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, September 22, 2011 3:45 PM
Why dont you do the
community and the country in general a huge service and
close down this ridiculous website you worthless bunch
of c--ts. So every f---ing center in the country is a
torture facility is it? People have real problems with
their children and need help and to stumble onto this
vomit doesnt help anyone
Doug's Facebook Account:
17062 Rand Drive
Doug's Business Info: Earle Douglas, LLC
Doug's Phone #: 480-837-3803
Earle Douglas, LLC is the registered owner of
The Fountain Hills Times.
As stated above, it is our policy not to respond to messages
that are sent in the format in which Doug chose to send his
"request". This addition to our requests page should be a
warning to others who think this type of insulting and vulgar
message is appropriate to send to victims of torture and abuse.
|Unresolved: HEAL does not expect this
issue will be resolved since Mr. Siggs is a vulgar, hateful
person who probably should be in jail.
|Rites of Passage, Inc. in CaliforniaResolved: Upon further review of available
information, HEAL has agreed to remove Rites of Passage, Inc.
from the website. Should we receive any requests or
complaints in the future, this may change.
First Link Issues:
Staff list does not designate which staff work with youth and
which staff work with adults only.
Rites of Passage/VisionQuest claims to provide all enrollment
materials/handbooks/etc. upon receipt of request.
Second Link Issues:
Rites of Passage, Inc. believes HEAL has mistaken Rites
of Passage/VisionQuest in CA with Rite of Passage in Minden, NV
and/or VisionQuest headquartered in Pennsylvania.
Rites of Passage, Inc. states they are 100% voluntary
and do not use behavior modification nor coercion as part of
Rites of Passage, Inc. takes issue with HEAL stating
that their program is "reportedly abusive".
Request: Rites of Passage would like to be removed from
the HEAL website completely and believes it has been placed on
our website due to error or confusion regarding its program and
a program of a similar name operating in another state.
|HEAL has updated the staff list to note
information submitted by Rites of Passage/VisionQuest.
has requested Rites of Passage/VisionQuest submit all enrollment
materials/waivers/contracts/handbooks/etc. to HEAL for review
and we have agreed not to post any concerns or questions about
said materials publicly prior to giving Rites of Passage/VisionQuest
ample opportunity to respond to any such questions or concerns.
Upon further review, we believe HEAL was in error in regards
to Rites of Passage Inc, in Santa Rosa, CA. It appears
that the VisionQuest program referenced in the
Article on VisionQuest was in regards to a wholly other
program headquartered in another state and operating in multiple
states, but, never in CA. And, we believe the confusion
regarding Rites of Passage in Santa Rosa may have been due to
the name similarity with a confirmedly abusive program operating
HEAL will need to review the enrollment materials, handbooks,
and other information provided to make sure there are no
disclaimers or waivers regarding involuntary placement of youth
in the program and to resolve any additional concerns that may
Due to the mistake(s) made regarding the confusion between
VisionQuest, Rite of Passage, and Rites of Passage/Vision Quest
in Santa Rosa, CA, HEAL has decided to remove Rites of Passage,
We apologize for any misunderstanding our confusion may have
Group/David P. Bolthouse/Abundant Life Academy
||Link to Bolthouse's site
violating intellectual property and privacy laws:
Our response to
Bolthouse's website is available at
|Our response to Bolthouse's website is
www.heal-online.org/bolthouse.htm. There are multiple
anti-HEAL websites violating intellectual property and privacy
laws and posting misleading, false, and defamatory statements
about HEAL. We believe our attention is best focused on
stopping institutional abuse and changing laws to better protect
children and families from fraud and abuse. Therefore,
while we have taken a moment out of our day to respond to
Bolthouse, do not expect the same attention for every
distracting website or blog created by frauds and child abusers.
They lie and we are all too aware of that. There is no
need to continually address their nonsense.
September 19th, 2014