DCFS (CPS) Knew Of Abuse At Hospital Of Horrors

.jpg photo of hospital in chicago where children were abused repeatedly
Chicago Lakeshore Hospital

Chicago Psychiatric Hospital Under Fire
After Child Abuse Allegations — Again

A new lawsuit calls Chicago Lakeshore a “hospital of horrors,” where children as young as 7 were allegedly sexually abused.

Child Predators Should Be Locked Up

This was posted on our website December 6, 2018.  Chicago Lakeshore Hospital’s 60-bed children’s unit is Uptown.  The hospital faces state and federal scrutiny after a rise in complaints alleging sexual and physical abuse by hospital employees and patients.

A federal lawsuit filed Wednesday by the Cook County public guardian alleged that children as young as 7 were sexually abused, while others were injected with sedatives to control them and physically attacked, at a Chicago psychiatric hospital. Child welfare officials, meanwhile, allegedly worked with the hospital to cover up the abuse.

Charles Golbert, the Cook County public guardian, filed the lawsuit on behalf of seven children who are in the care of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services and who had been involuntarily admitted to Chicago Lakeshore Hospital in 2017 and 2018.

“These kids are entitled to justice for what happened to them at this facility,” Golbert said in an interview Wednesday.  “DCFS knew perfectly well about all of the problems and dangers at this hospital.”

He added that he hoped the lawsuit sent a strong message to DCFS: “You cannot keep kids at placements once you know the placement is dangerous.”

ProPublica Illinois and the Chicago Tribune in separate investigations last year revealed numerous allegations of sexual abuse, assault and patient safety violations at the hospital.  In response, state lawmakers and the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois, which monitors DCFS as part of a federal consent decree, demanded the agency take action.

DCFS’ acting inspector general had previously raised concerns with the agency about the safety of children at Lakeshore.  The ACLU took DCFS to federal court following the news reports, and late last year the agency agreed to stop sending its children to the hospital and removed those who remained there.

“We support this effort to hold responsible those who have done harm to children in the care of DCFS,” the ACLU’s Heidi Dalenberg said on Wednesday.

Chicago Lakeshore Hospital CEO Patricia McClure-Chessier said in a statement that officials “have always placed the health and safety of the children we treat as our top priority.”  She said it was “tragic” that Golbert chose to “malign health care providers instead of addressing the root of this statewide crisis: a lack of state funding which prevents children from getting appropriate care at the right time and in the right place.”

She said she will “vigorously defend Chicago Lakeshore Hospital using facts rather than the egregious distortion that has been portrayed before the press.”

DCFS takes allegations of abuse seriously and has not allowed children to be placed at Lakeshore this year, spokesman Jassen Strokosch said in a statement.  He said the agency, which has a new acting director, has hired more than 300 employees since April and has “begun to make dramatic improvements to overcome the challenges that have plagued the department for decades.”

“DCFS is committed to protecting the children of Illinois and providing the best possible services to the children in our care,” Strokosch said.

The lawsuit detailed abuse at the hands of employees and other patients, alleging children found themselves at a “hospital of horrors” instead of a safe environment where they could focus on their treatment.

One 14-year-old girl, according to the lawsuit, was allegedly sexually assaulted multiple times by a nurse who showed her pornographic videos as well as allowed her and others to fill out their own medical paperwork and to use the nurse’s vaping device.  The girl and others reportedly escaped from the hospital and were missing for several months.

That nurse, according to the lawsuit, was charged this year with attempted murder in an incident involving her housemate.  Her nursing license was revoked.

The lawsuit also claims a male hospital employee entered the room of a 12-year-old girl and forced her hand on his genitals and grabbed her breasts.  A 7-year-old boy was allegedly forced to perform oral sex on his older roomate, who had previously physically abused him.  And the hospital didn’t put precautions in place to protect an 8-year-old girl who also was sexually assaulted by a peer, the lawsuit alleges, despite the hospital knowing the boy had previously sexually assaulted his roommate.

The lawsuit, which seeks monetary compensation for the children, alleges that DCFS relied so heavily on Lakeshore because it “had worn out its welcome” at other psychiatric hospitals in the Chicago area.  Psychiatric hospitals were reluctant to admit DCFS children because state budgetary constraints delayed payments to them, and DCFS routinely kept children in psychiatric hospitals after they had been medically cleared for discharge, according to the lawsuit.

In June 2018, ProPublica Illinois first reported on children trapped in psychiatric hospitals because DCFS struggled to find them appropriate placements.  Golbert filed a lawsuit last December on behalf of the hundreds of children who remained in psychiatric hospitals after being cleared for release.  That lawsuit is pending. DCFS said at the time that finding appropriate placement for children is challenging and that the agency was working to reduce the need for hospitalization and build up additional places for children.

DCFS’ desperation for a psychiatric hospital that would accept its children led agency officials and Lakeshore to engage in “concerted efforts to cover-up or discredit the allegations of abuse,” according to the lawsuit, which also alleged the hospital failed to repair broken video cameras and destroyed existing video in an attempt to hide evidence that could corroborate the allegations.

The lawsuit names Lakeshore, its owner Signature Healthcare Services, former hospital CEO David Fletcher-Janzen, a number of hospital employees who worked there at the time of the allegations and several DCFS officials, including former department chief Beverly “B.J.” Walker.

Last December, the hospital was days away from losing federal funding.  Officials said they would terminate Lakeshore’s Medicare agreement because the hospital could not ensure its patients were free from sexual and physical abuse and it did not have sufficient policies to investigate the allegations.

One year later, the hospital finds itself in a similar position. Federal officials notified Lakeshore that they plan to terminate its Medicare agreement on Monday, the latest deadline in a long list of dates that have been extended.  The hospital has filed temporary restraining orders and preliminary injunctions in federal court to fight the termination.  Lakeshore officials have said losing the federal funding could force the hospital to shut down.

An inspection last month by the Illinois Department of Public Health on behalf of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services found deficiencies that “immediately jeopardize the health and safety of its patients,” federal officials wrote in a letter to the hospital.

In her statement, McClure-Chessier said Chicago Lakeshore Hospital “has always cooperated with regulators in a transparent way and we work diligently to correct any problems that arise while treating the most difficult and troubled populations — populations other hospitals cannot or will not treat because of acuity or inadequate reimbursement.”

11 thoughts on “DCFS (CPS) Knew Of Abuse At Hospital Of Horrors”

  1. I enjoyed talking to you as well. I know that the holidays are hard when you have lost a family member. I won’t let this be swept under the rug. I have confidence that God Almighty will exposed and cast down these evil people

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Saundra, Yes Ma’am I totally agree, we must never waiver in our Faith, and be diligent in our labors for Our Mighty GOD.
      You are always remembered in my prayers Sister Saundra!
      Sincerely,
      Robert

      Like

    1. Hello Mary Ann, Thank You for your input, we highly value it here. The more people talking about the victimization of Our Children, is heard by more people, and it shines the light more brightly on what is so wrong with this world.
      The only people around here that think those things are “conspiracys” are the “indifferent”.
      When I first started our website, I was shocked at how many people were “indifferent”, but it didn’t take a mountain falling on me to make me realize “WHY” they are indifferent. HHS (CPS) is a very corrupt federal department, do not believe any of the stats you read there.
      Incidentally, HHS (CPS) is governed by the 3 Branches of our Federal Government.
      Sincerely,
      Robert

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You do a great service by sharing the truth.
        I once desired to be a caseworker until I read the accounts of how cases are substantiated.. I knew I did not have the strong heart required to leave a child in an abusive home simply because it did not fit their textbook criteria. The story I Am David, is about a child who was overlooked by those who should have noticed..
        Thank you for being a voice for children.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. DCF takes allegations if abuse seriously? Funny how in the Family Court System in Tampa Florida DCF(Gulf Coast Family Services) Facilitated the original abuse of my grandchildren and covered up the severe abuse of them for over a year via falsified court documents. That was DCF, CPS, Guardian ad Litem Program. Attorney General Chris Phillips and Norman Palumbo the so called lawyer for the children and my son. He worked Way harder for the traffickers than he did for my family

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Saundra, Thank You so much for your highly valued input!
      Yes, I totally agree, and my heart goes out to you and your Dear Family for all these evil people have put you thru.
      I can bear witness to the fact that in all the posts I have published on our 2 sites about HHS (CPS), any time they are to blame or caught breaking the law, the first opportunity they have, you are going to hear about how over worked, understaffed, and under paid they are, and the news media is going to spend the rest of the article talking about their inhuman work load and how underpaid these poor evil people are.
      You will never see any do time for the fake documents for the courts so they can illegally kidnap Children from their Families, and suddenly it is always swept under the rug.
      Saundra, you and your Dear Family are always in Our prayers, and I hope you know how much I enjoyed talking with you over the holidays.
      Sincerely,
      Robert

      Like

      1. I enjoyed talking to you as well. I know that the holidays are hard when you have lost a family member. I won’t let this be swept under the rug. I have confidence that God Almighty will exposed and cast down these evil people

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Hello Saundra, it is good to see you!
        Yes Ma’am, the holidays are hard, no matter if a Family member has gone ahead or if you are unable to be with your Family.
        We must be strong Sister, and I want you to know that you and your Dear Family are in my prayers!
        Sincerely,
        Robert

        Like

    1. Hello Irene, Thank You so much for your input, which I highly value! Our Children need more people like you, that care so much for their well-being.
      The Department of Health and Human Services (Child Protective Services), is over seen by the three branches of our Federal Government, and this corrupt government office has excaped re-organization and prison time for many of their employees for far too long.
      Sincerely,
      Robert

      Liked by 2 people

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