I posted the following to the Courier-Post web forums today.
The following definition was obtained from DCBHS document "Out of Home Treatment Referral and Admission Process, Training Manual"
Specialty Beds are specialized treatment services that are provided at designated Residential Treatment Centers to serve children/youth who meet one or more of the following criteria:
1.) moderate of high risk fire setting behavior within past 2 years at any location
2.) assault with a weapon within the last 2 years and with injury
3.) moderate or high risk sex offending behavior by a youth who is adjudicated OR non-adjudicated
4.) cruelty to animals with the last year
Perhaps the Courier-Post could spend the time and effort to research this issue instead of simply posting quotes from the private company who stands to gain financially.
The State of New Jersey issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) for specialized behavioral health beds. NJ Mentor, a for-profit company owned by venture capital firm Vestar Capital Partners, was awarded a $6,752,700 contract.
I asked NJ Mentor and state representatives for this RFP and contract and was told to file a formal request with the State of NJ via the open public records act. If these documents corraborate the story NJ Mentor is providing the the public, why aren't they being made readily available?
Personal assurances and statements are worthless. Contracts dictate.
These group homes are required as part of the resolution of a law suit between the State of New Jersey and Children's Rights Inc., a New York child advocacy group. The need for specialty beds is discussed in section 4a of the document titled "Progress of the New Jersey Department of Children and Families". An excerpt is provided below:
"The State is attempting to address the need for more in-state treatment services by creating 60 new specialty beds for children/youth who have some of the most common challenges of children placed out-of-state in the last six months – fire setting, low IQ (55-75), assaultive behavior, and sexual aggression. A Request for Proposals (RFP) was issued by DCBHS seeking in-state program bids for specialty services for boys and girls age 8-12 and 15-18 and for girls age 12-18 with the behaviors previously described and those with a history of running away from placement. The RFP seeks programs that will adhere to a “no reject/no eject” policy so that children/youth who meet a specific program’s criteria for treatment will be accepted in the program, and the program will not terminate the child/youth from the program before his/her treatment is complete."