Thursday, June 18, 2009

On my soap box!

I usually try to keep this light and fluffy but a situation occurred today that has me just in a state of anger and I have to get it off my chest.

A couple of the girls from work and I went to lunch at Carl's Jr. today and when we walked in there was a couple of caregivers there with their adult mentally handicapped charges. We didn't think anything of it, placed our orders, and grabbed a seat. The lady caregiver ushered two of the mobile adults out the door and left them wandering the parking lot while she came back in to get the man in the wheelchair. We made a comment about how irresponsible and went back to chatting. The lone caregiver was in the restaurant still with a gentleman that was probably in his late 30's. The man was getting agitated and started to yank at his hair in frustration. Now honestly we didn't see what he did that was so bad, but suddenly the caregiver jumps across the table and grabs the man in a chokehold, knocking him to the ground. He sat on him and started to rudely berate him. He finally climbed off of him, yanking him up by his shirt and yelling at him to pick up his belongings that were dropped, yelling at him to not look at an elderly woman walking in (thus scaring her), and to get out to the parking lot. We commented amongst ourselves about how unprofessional that was handled and how the caregiver was acting like a bully but didn't think much of it.

It didn't end there, of course. In the parking lot, the male caregiver and the client had another "altercation" of the man still in a state of agitation not wanting to get in the van. Th ecaregiver again put him in a chokehold and slammed him down on the asphalt, sitting on him. He didn't stop there, though. He pulled this gentleman's pants down and proceeded to SPANK him! Yes, he did! He spanked this handicapped man that was in his care! And when the man started to fight, he began to punch him. We were just stunned watching this happen. The female caregiver got the man in the wheelchair in the van and opened the doors for the other two to get in and pulled out her phone to call someone. How utterly irresponsible of her! If the other patients had become agitated over what was going on there would have been no way the caregivers could have controlled what was going on. The male caregiver finally got up and again pulled the man up by his shirt. He kept making the patient put his arms up in the air and would poke him in the sides before making him hug him before he would be allowed to get in the van. This had gone on for at least ten minutes and then another fifteen minutes with the caregivers on the phone doing an incident report. The male caregiver was having his "wounds" documented by the female and had bloody knuckles. We had had enough and Annette stopped him to ask where he worked and what his name was. He only gave up where he worked and that was it.

We filed complaints with the company and Annette finally got the director on the phone before we left work to tell what had happened. The two caregivers were being suspended while an investigation was going on. The biggest issue was there was absolutely NO need to take this man to the ground in such a manner. He was agitated, he wasn't making any threatening moves, he was pulling at his hair to express himself. There was nothing that should have ever told the caregiver it was alright to humiliate his patient in the form he did by terrorizing him in front of everyone and spanking him. I was so disturbed over the whole situation that I just didn't know what to do. I have never seen someone treated in such a bullying and degrading manner and to know it was a person that couldn't even defend themselves made it even worse.

I hope this institute sticks to what they told Annette today and the caregivers are not allowed to take patients out like this, if they are even allowed to keep their jobs.


Lesli said...

I saw this on Facebook and am glad you elaborated on here about what actually happened . Good for you for calling & turning these people in. They should lose their jobs and face charges of abuse, if you ask me. I am glad you took a stand, Michelle. So many people just turn away and don't do anything.

Jensen Family said...

Very sad story but also made me very mad. I don't blame you for not knowing what to do. The caregiver would probably have punched you out if you had said anything.It does make me angry at Carl Jr's for allowing it to happen in their building or in the parking lot. In fact it makes me angry at any man who was there if they didn't try to stop it.

On a better note - have fun with that Barbie party!! When I went to Roxanna's when Layla was born I, of course was expected to play Barbie with Macy! She is big into princesses and I swear we could have played that all day long. I couldn't think up enough pretend stuff to keep us going, but no worries, Macy could come up with whatever we needed. So,have lots of fun.

Rowberry Family said...

ugggh reading that makes me so sick how those handicaped people got treated! So glad you guys turned them in!

Rowberry Family said...

by the way are you going to Idaho with everyone?

Orelinde_03 said...

OMG!!! This has totally made me sick-to-my-stomach! How people think they can mistreat another human, physically, emotionally or otherwise is beyond me.

In order to be a care-giver you have to have an extremly unlimited amount of patience, followed with kindness. Obviously these people that you are a companion for did not choose to be the way they are, and they are your responsibility! Yes you will get frustrated at times with their behaviour. But under no circumstances is it ok to manhandle and abuse your patient the way these two seem to. Restraining if they act out is one thing. But from what you witnessed, it was out-right abuse on several levels.

I hope that these two people do lose thier jobs, and are taken up on charges. Because you just know they will not change their ways.

I have a cousin of mine who is mentally handicapped, and due to his parents health issues, and advanced age he is in a group home. The stories of neglect and abuse he has expierenced in some of the past group homes is just disturbing. Sow hen I heard about this event you were witness to, it made me even it hits close to home.

You guys were right not to try to intervene. Who knows if the caregiver would have lashed out at you, or only mistreated his patient worse. Kudo for reporting it.

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