Director of Montana children’s facility which was closed after claims of appalling abuse calls for the center to be reopened to prevent the kids from suffering further trauma
- Officials in Montana have removed 27 children from a youth treatment facility
- The allegations include physical and psychological abuse and assaults on youths
- Staff were accused of inflicting brutal psychology abuse on the children, as well as enforcing draconian discipline, such as 20 mile walks in harsh conditions
- Youths up to 17 were allegedly punched, kicked, slammed and spat on by staff
The director of a Montana children’s facility that was shut down and had 27 youths removed amid accusations of appalling abuse has called for the center to be reopened.
Executive director of the Ranch for Kids, William Sutley, says he wants to reopen following the suspension of their license, claiming that the decision to pull the youths from the program will prove traumatic for them.
The harrowing allegations include physical and psychological abuse and assaults of children by staff at the Ranch for Kids in Rexford, including one particular claim that a student was shot at with a nail gun, state health officials said.
‘The health, safety, and welfare of all children who live in Montana is paramount, and no child should have to experience what multiple sources have alleged has happened at the Ranch for Kids,’ Sheila Hogan, the director of the Department of Public Health and Human Services, said.
The harrowing allegations include physical and psychological abuse and assaults of children by staff at the Ranch for Kids in Rexford, including one particular claim that a student was shot at with a nail gun, state health officials said
DPHHS said reports include consistent and chronic allegations of physical and psychological abuse, as well as medical neglect, it was reported by Yahoo News.
Children aged between 11 to 17 were allegedly punched, kicked, body slammed and spat on by staff.
Staff were accused of inflicting brutal psychology abuse on the children, as well as enforcing draconian discipline, such as 20 mile walks in harsh conditions without shoes.
They were also accused of withholding food, shooting a nail gun at a student and prolonged isolation.
Other allegations include children not receiving critical medical attention, medications not being properly administered, stored or regulated and runaways not being reported in a consistent or timely manner to law enforcement.
William Sutley – Executive Director for The Ranch for Kids Project Montana
The DPHHS said the children were removed Tuesday and officials were trying to contact parents and make plans to reunify families or help find suitable placement for the youth.
On its website, the Ranch for Kids said its program offers an ‘effective, compassionate treatment program’ for children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) and Reactive Attachment Disorder.
It advertises itself a facility that ‘serves as a bridge of hope and healing for hurting families.’
The facility was founded in 1994 in Wyoming as a private, not-for-profit licensed adoption agency.
The Ranch For Kids Project officially moved to Montana in the early 2000s near Eureka, primarily catering towards adopted children from Russia.
DPHHS says the allegations of abuse have escalated in both frequency and severity in recent months.
‘We have carefully staffed this process to ensure that the children are in a safe, trauma-informed place with needed care and proper nutrition,’ DPHHS officials said.