Six SWITC employees disciplined for abuse, neglect of residents

NAMPA – The Department of Health and Welfare has finished its investigation into allegations of physical and psychological abuse and neglect by staff members involving seven adult residents at the Southwest Idaho Treatment Center (SWITC) in Nampa.

The investigation revealed a localized issue involving six employees. Disciplinary action up to and including termination has been taken against all the employees who were found to have engaged in conduct considered abuse and/or neglect. They have either voluntarily left employment or were terminated for cause.

The investigation determined there were two main perpetrators who psychologically and/or physically abused residents. There was no sexual abuse.

Four employees were aware of the psychological abuse by the two employees and did not report it, which constitutes neglect.

“Six employees engaging in this type of conduct is six employees too many,” said DHW Director Russ Barron. “But I am pleased the investigation revealed the problem to be limited, and I am grateful to the quality SWITC employees who have continued to provide a safe and therapeutic environment for our residents there. The work environment at SWITC during this time was even more challenging than usual.”

The investigation was triggered in late June when an employee followed internal policies and reported concerns about resident safety. DHW notified the Nampa Police Department of the allegations.

SWITC’s mission is to provide assessment, training, and treatment to people with intellectual disabilities until they can be safely transitioned back into their communities. SWITC currently has 20 residents and 109 permanent and temporary employees.

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For media inquiries:
Niki Forbing-Orr
Public Information Manager
Niki.Forbing-Orr@dhw.idaho.gov
(208) 334-0668

 

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