The closure or non-closure of a public secure residential facility comes down to two essential issues: Are there services available to the youth that are being placed at public secure residential facilities elsewhere in Michigan; and, is the cost of maintaining public secure residential facilities an appropriate use of public funds?
The answer to the first question is yes. Every service element at public residential facilities either exists or can be put in place to ensure that clients receive either identical or more services in the private sector. Wolverine Secure Treatment Center only needs to add additional medical staff to be able to provide necessary services for the medically fragile. All other service areas are covered.
The second issue is cost. With Wolverine and other secure providers having a state regulated per diem of $322.78, the cost of placement at public residential facilities is at least 25% higher for the same services. This shouldn’t make sense to any taxpayer in Michigan.
The other related issues appear to be based on misinformation about secure private agency programs rejecting/ejecting youth who end up at public secure residential facilities. This simply is not true. Wolverine has a no reject/no eject contract which it follows to the letter. The only youth removed from the program are by court order, when the local court decides to move them.
Wolverine does not/has not requested for the removal of a youth from its facility. When supporters of public secure residential facilities talk about private agencies rejecting/ejecting youth that end up at public secure residential facilities, they are speaking of non-secure youth escalated to secure that are then ordered to public secure residential facilities.