Zero Tolerance Policy (Date Revised: September 2015)
Nothing is more important to The Campbell Center than the health and safety of our clients. The Campbell Center has “zero tolerance” for client abuse or neglect.
DEFINITION: abuse includes physical abuse, neglect, financial abuse, abandonment, isolation, abduction or other treatment which results in physical harm, pain or mental suffering; or deprivation, by a person providing care and supervision, of goods and services which are necessary to avoid physical harm or mental suffering.
- Physical Abuse: use or attempt of force on the person, unreasonable physical constraint or prolonged or continual deprivation of food, water, or sexual abuse. It also means the use of isolation, physical or chemical restraints, or psychotropic medication without medical authorization for punishment.
- Mental suffering: fear, agitation, confusion, severe depression or other forms of emotional distress that is brought about by threats, harassment or other forms of intimidating behavior.
- Neglect: the negligent failure of a person(s) having care or custody of a client to exercise a reasonable degree of care including, but not limited to, a failure to assist in personal hygiene and the provision of food, clothing and shelter, or failure to provide medical care or protect the client from health and safety hazards.
Observed or suspected or reported mistreatment of any client means the following or anything like the following:
- Hitting, slapping, pinching, pushing, pulling, biting or anything that causes fear, pain or discomfort to a client. This includes client to client interaction.
- Unreasonable physical constraint. (Reasonable actions taken to protect a client or others from a client’s behaviors, taken in compliance with recognized and accepted behavior protocols, are not considered abuse, but they can become abusive if the intervention is more than is required to protect the client and those around him or her.)
- Sexual abuse, which includes sexual touching of any kind and inappropriate, suggestive and/or offensive sexual talk to or around a client.
- Name calling, demeaning, tormenting, threatening, mean teasing, yelling, harassing, or any other similar treatment.
- Disciplining by withholding food, water or preferred activities or causing pain, discomfort or trauma, even if in a purported behavior modification plan.
- Wrongfully taking anything from a client, including, but not limited to possessions, money, or anticipated income.
- Use of a physical or chemical restraint or psychotropic medication under any of the following conditions:
(1) For punishment.
(2) For a period beyond that for which the medication was ordered pursuant to the instructions of a physician and surgeon licensed in the State of California, who is providing medical care to the client at the time the instructions are given.
(3) For any purpose not authorized by the physician and surgeon.
- Denying client rights, except in accordance with the requirements of section 50530 – 50540 of Title 17 of the California Code of Regulations.
POLICY: Client abuse committed by The Campbell Center employees or residential employees will not be tolerated. All such abuse or allegations of such abuse will be reported and thoroughly investigated. Any employee of The Campbell Center found to have engaged in abuse against a client will be subject to severe discipline, up to and including discharge. In some cases law enforcement is included and prosecution can take place. Any abuse found to have been committed by a service provider will be referred to the appropriate authorities and the service provider may also be subject to sanctions up to and including removal from the list of those authorized to provide services to the Regional Center clients.
All employees of The Campbell Center who are “mandated reporters” pursuant to California Penal Code and all employees of service providers who are mandated reporters shall strictly comply with the reporting laws at all times. A mandated reporter must (unless exempt under law) report all client abuse to the applicable governmental authorities immediately or as soon as practical after discovery or reasonable belief that client abuse has occurred.
If you observe or suspect client abuse, or if it is reported to you, you must:
- Immediately do what is reasonable and necessary to stop it and to protect the health and safety of all clients and others who could be harmed by it.
- Immediately report it to the Regional Center by phone and in writing within 24 hours.
- Immediately report it to Adult Protective Services, or,
- Immediately report it to law enforcement.
- Report it to your supervisor and/or the perpetrator’s supervisor, as appropriate.
The laws relating to reporting are complex and demanding. Failure to properly report can result in both fine and imprisonment. This policy does not purport to contain all of the reporting requirements.
The Campbell Center and all service providers and facilities serving The Campbell Center clients shall ensure their employees are fully informed upon hire and annually thereafter regarding The Campbell Center’s policy on Client Abuse and Neglect and the mandatory abuse and neglect reporting laws. Each employee must be knowledgeable of their responsibility to protect clients from abuse and neglect, the signs of abuse and neglect, the process for reporting suspected abuse or neglect, and the consequences of failing to follow the law and enforce this policy.
If The Campbell Center or any service provider or residential facility becomes aware of client abuse, it shall take immediate action, to the extent required by law, to ensure the health and safety of the affected client and all other clients receiving services and supports from The Campbell Center services.