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Letter to the Editor: RE: SDS

 

As the executive director of Southeastern Developmental Services Inc. (SDS), I am writing to address the article released on March 29, 2019 concerning an instance of “Caretaker Abuse” at our agency. This response is to provide the community with some facts detailing our process and procedures when dealing with these types of situations.

Due to the fact that this is an active case I am unable to give any specific details at this time.  However, I do want to let the community know that when SDS receives any allegations of mistreatment, abuse, neglect or exploitation, we follow stringent state regulations to ensure the safety of the individuals we serve.  First and foremost, when our agency was made aware of the allegation noted in the article released on March 29th, we immediately reported these allegations to Adult Protective Services here in Prowers County and to the Prowers County Sheriff’s Department.  We worked in collaboration with these agencies as well as the State of Colorado Attorney General’s office to ensure the most comprehensive investigation occurred.

Additionally, all employees are run through a very extensive pre-employment screening. Which partially consist of conducting five different background checks through several governmental agencies. This process provides our agency with any prior violations that would identify a person as a potential risk, disqualifying them from employment. Our agency takes these procedures very serious as we want to choose the best possible direct support professional to work with the individuals we serve.

SDS has been serving the intellectually/developmentally disabled population of Southeastern Colorado for 55 years. We urge anyone who would like more information about our agency to stop in and/or call me to visit at any time. As a nonprofit agency we have always received an enormous amount of support from our community! Currently we have our “Miles of Pennies” fundraiser collection jars in many local businesses. Thank you Southeastern Colorado for your continued support!

Respectfully,
David Harbour, Executive Director
Southeastern Developmental Services

Filed Under: Letters to the Editor

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