A private Sacramento agency running a foster care shelter has violated health and safety laws and the personal rights of children over 120 times in recent years, which is a number that surprisingly is only matched by state licensed facilities that have already been shut down or placed on probation. Since 2012, state citations at the Children’s Receiving Home of Sacramento describe filthy dorms, poorly trained staff, and mishandled medications. In early September, the stench of urine in a bedroom was so overwhelming that a state inspector was unable to remain in the bedroom to inspect it. To make matters worse, an employee was terminated this year for having an “inappropriate relationship” with an underage client and for smoking marijuana with runaway foster youth. Malik Pinckney, an 18 year old foster youth who was sent as a younger teen to the Receiving Home campus, stated,
It’s almost like they want to get shut down, like they don’t think people are going to check. It’s just neglectful, pure neglect, of everything at the place — the buildings, and the kids.
State regulators had placed the Receiving Home on an extensive 12-month correction plan three years ago after its failure to make earlier, promised, reforms. David Ballard, CEO of the nonprofit Children’s Receiving Home, has said that his agency strives to provide the best care for foster youth, and he attributed the high number of citations to particularly diligent reporting to state authorities. State and county officials have apparently declined to comment on the significance of the high number of citations, stating that individual foster care facilities are unique and should not be compared. The issues at this foster care shelter campus need to be solved or the place needs to be closed for the safety of all of the youth that are placed at that campus.