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Sovereign Health Working with Internal Affairs Investigation Branch for Resolution Regarding Falsified State Documents by Community Care Licensing Division

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif., March 13, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- On January 16, 2017, Sovereign Health, a national behavioral health system, filed a formal complaint with the director of the California Department of Social Services, outlining a pattern of harassment by officials from the CDSS's Community Care Licensing Division. The complaint details the outrageous conduct of CCLD staff, who were accompanied by an armed, unidentified investigator on an unannounced site visit to a Sovereign children's facility, an adolescent mental health treatment center.

Specifically at issue, aside from the armed and unidentified individual, are the intentionally falsified documents logged by CCLD Licensing Program Manager Shelly Grace, and Licensing Program Analyst Marisol Lopez. The documents in question deliberately omitted any mention of CCLD's illegal actions in reference to the unnamed and gun-wielding individual at the children's recovery center. This facility recently received the Gold Seal accreditation from the Joint Commission, the nation's oldest and most respected healthcare accrediting body.

Sovereign's complaint highlights the fact that the gun-wielding individual wore no badge or other form of identification, and refused to give his name while terrifying child residents by brandishing his weapon as he stalked the grounds of the facility. CCLD staff Grace and Lopez, who were conducting the visit, refused to name the armed intruder and stood by as he bullied the staff and belligerently ordered the Facility's Medical Director into a room and refusing to allow the Facility Administrator to enter the same room.

In the complaint, Sovereign's general counsel and board member Seth Zajac protested that, "The children's recovery home is a sanctuary for children with mental illness and for children recovering from trauma." Mr. Zajac added, "These actions by CCLD's staff are despicable. It was dangerous. Sending a gun-wielding individual to the children's recovery home in civilian clothing, who refused to identify himself, interferes with our staff's ability to identify a potential active shooter. And it was illegal: Health and Safety Code Section 1533 requires staff to properly identify themselves before entering the licensed children's recovery home." Mr. Zajac also states that CCLD urgently needs to clean up its act; "This disgusting conduct was entirely unnecessary, unprecedented and unlawful. This disgusting conduct must never happen again."

Sovereign Health and its legal team have met with CDSS Investigator Peter Zertuche, and complied with all requests in communications about the incident.

About Sovereign Health

Sovereign Health's mission is to provide a broad spectrum of high-quality behavioral health treatment services for adults and adolescents, including support services for family members. One factor that differentiates Sovereign from other treatment providers has been the company's ability to offer separate mental health and addiction or dual diagnosis treatment programs at its facilities. For more information, visit www.sovhealth.com.


To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/sovereign-health-working-with-internal-affairs-investigation-branch-for-resolution-regarding-falsified-state-documents-by-community-care-licensing-division-300423008.html