Governor Whitmer Statement on Youth Death at Lakeside for Children in Kalamazoo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 20, 2020
Contact: Press@michigan.gov

Governor Whitmer Statement on Youth Death at Lakeside for Children in Kalamazoo

Lansing, MICH.  Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the below statement following the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) suspending the license of Lakeside for Children in Kalamazoo where a youth died in May after being wrongly restrained by staff:

“Protecting our most vulnerable is a top priority of my administration, and the senseless death of a youth at Lakeside for Children in Kalamazoo is intolerable and heartbreaking. We will take steps to prevent tragedies like this from occurring in the future and make sure there is accountability.

“Today I directed MDHHS Director Robert Gordon to take every step necessary to ensure Sequel Youth and Family Services — the company that provided staffing for Lakeside for Children where the 16-year-old died — no longer provides services for facilities licensed by the department.”  Governor Whitmer’s directive follows MDHHS’s announcement that it will eliminate the use of restraints against youth in its care, and review and reform its policies to prevent future tragedies. The MDHHS Division of Child Welfare conducted an investigation of the facility in coordination with other department investigators and local law enforcement.

Additional information from MDHHS can be found here.

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