Monday, March 17, 2008

One Runs Home...

I'd like to make you aware of a situation with a boy named Nate Tseglin. Nate is a 17-year-old boy who lives not far from me. I do not know Nate or his family, but have been made aware of his story by other, mutual friends.
In a nutshell, Nate was forced into residential treatment by San Diego Child Protective Services against both his will and the will of his parents. Please take a moment to read this post by Kristina and some very interesting comments. Included in the comments are this link to GetNateHome.com, which gives a detailed description of events leading up to Nate's removal and what has occurred since. Please do read the timeline, which will give you a feel for the level of tragedy that Nate and his family are dealing with. Here, also, is a brief post from last week by Ginger, and excellent blogger who I disagree with on so many issues - but not this one.
So my point in bringing up Nate's plight is not to ask for pity for him (though I do, like Ginger and Nate's parents ask for prayers for him), but instead to ask for help. Is there anyone reading this blog who has any help or service that can be offered to assist the family? Several things come to mind:

Does anyone have the capacity to provide expert testimony on the adverse effects of psychotropic medications, that could be provided gratis?
Can anyone testify as to the nature and scope of self-injurious behavior, and accepted means of managing that behavior without medication?
Is there a lawyer who has expertise in any of these areas relating to this circumstance with Nate?
Are there any folks with media contacts who could help to increase public exposure - particularly in the coastal Southern California region? Added media exposure could potentially identify others who can help as well as increasing public pressure on CPS to resolve this situation in Nate's favor.

I am pulling for Nate to have a positive outcome, and I hope that someone out there feels the same way and is equipped to help to a greater degree than I. If so, please email me directly and I will connect you with the family, or direct you to someone else who can.

Now, on to another boy. My son, J. On the off chance that any of the State's agents in this situation happen upon this blog, I'd like to illustrate what can happen when a boy who is on the autism spectrum is provided the opportunity to live and learn and experience in a positive, family-based environment.
As for a brief lead-in... A few days ago, we received an email at home that our sons' Little League website was up and running, and we went to take a look at the schedules and whatnot. We noticed a tab on the screen for 'Albums', which led us to a series of pictures from Week 1. We looked over the pictures, most of which were of older kids playing hardball, pitching, sliding, making reaching catches and bullet throws. But there were a few of the T-ballers including, lo and behold, one of our own boys! (They both are on the same team as discussed here). Never mind that J is clearly running way past Home Plate to the side, and never mind that he is not exactly tearing up the turf like a racehorse - the point is that he is participating in a positive way and having a great time doing it!

5 comments:

Niksmom said...

Steve, the picture and story of your kids is wonderful. The situation with Nate is not. I'm on the east coast but have emailed some other bloggers (who might not ordinarily stop by here) to ask them to help get the word out and help in any other ways possible.

Special Needs Mama said...

hi steve,
came here via niksmom. Quickly, Learning Rights Law Center in La could probably help with issues like this. Google them and you will find a phone number or address. (sorry, I'm surfing here from my phone and don't have the information handy.) Also clearly their local regional center could and should be involved. San Diego Regional Center is the one I believe??? Email me directly if you like and I will see what more I can learn. vickiforman(@)gmail.com

Jeanie said...

Dear Steve,
Thank you for your thoughts and bringing some attention to the nightmare of a situation for Nate Tseglin and his parents. Anyone is welcome to visit our site, www.getnatehome.com, for more details, and join our advocacy Group from this site if you would like more ideas on helping Nate and his family.
Thanks again Steve!!
Jeanie

Anonymous said...

San Diego Regional Center, most specifically, Mary Heed, a phony, fake behavioral specialist(who doesn't have a degree in psychology or any experience with directly caring for long term patients with self injury, can not and should never be trusted. These so called experts are nothing more than people who write reports and refer parents to other places who don't know what to do. It's a total con. SDRC is perhaps the biggest con job the government has ever pulled off in San Diego. The people working there are largely ignorant and work tirelessly against parents.

Anonymous said...

· San Francisco Chronicle: August 4, 1997; Agencies for disabled in disarray. “The sprawling bureaucracy that controls more than $1 billion a year for developmentally disabled Californians is plagued by mismanagement and financial abuses so severe that the health and safety of the disabled have been jeopardized. State officials have known for two decades of serious problems in the network of 21 private, state-funded regional centers…More than 100 interviews and thousands of pages of audits, state reports and court documents revealed that some centers have been linked to embezzlement, fraud and unethical financial deals. Hundreds of children and adults with varying degrees of mental retardation, autism and cerebral palsy have received inadequate services—or no services at all—though the state and federal governments have increased regional center budgets by millions of dollars a year.”
· December 5, 1997, Chronicle writer Edward W. Lempinen, wrote: In a scathing report hand-delivered to top state officials yesterday, the U.S. Health Care Financing Administration criticized the state for risking the health and safety of the disabled, lax state oversight of their care and mismanagement of federal funds… Disabled people and their families who complain about services sometimes suffer retaliation from those who oversee their care.”

· Legislative Analyst's Office
February 2006 Analysts wrote there are, “…serious concerns about …quality of care or access to care for Regional Center clients.” Source: http://www.lao.ca.gov/analysis_2006/health_ss/hss_11_4300_anl06.html



· Since the 1997 San Francisco investigative news coverage the only thing proposed to help track and monitor disabled person’s within the Regional Center has been in 2006: Under the client-tracking legislation, SB 571, each regional center would have to submit a Client Development Evaluation Report on each client at least every 15 months. The Department of Developmental Services, the primary agency monitoring Regional Centers opposed the bill. The bill was later gutted. Why would an agency appointed to protect disabled oppose a bill protecting disabled? Because these agencies don’t want the public to see the pervasive neglect of disabled and the total failure of the system serving disabled.

· June 23, 2001, Los Angeles Times: “State officials have moved to revoke the licenses of 14 homes and day care centers for developmentally disabled adults operated by an Anaheim company accused of allowing clients to be sexually and physically abused….California Department of Social Services accused Westview Services of a variety of health and safety violations at the facilities, which are licensed to serve about 530 people in Orange and Los Angeles counties.” Again, Regional Centers were responsible for monitoring the disabled inside the group homes.

· March 18, 2001 San Francisco Chronicle explains Regional Centers shockingly LONG history of ineptitude: “In 1965, the legislature created two pilot organizations for providing community services in San Francisco and Los Angeles. Called regional centers, they served as nonprofit brokers between state coffers and local suppliers of housing, training and other services to the disabled… State legislators, though, soon learned of serious problems in the new community care system. Reports and audits submitted to them in 1976 and 1988 described abuses of power, high turnover among social workers, poor accounting practices and chronic budget deficits at the regional centers.”

· February 25, 2001, The Sacramento Bee reported: “…a class-action lawsuit filed last year in an Oakland federal court on behalf of several disabled Californians and a handful of advocacy groups…. Allegations are that the state has failed to provide adequate services for disabled people….”

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