Senator Somers and Senator Logan Release Statement Re: Alleged Whiting Forensic Institute Scandal

October 10, 2017

HARTFORD, Conn. – Today Co-Chair of the Public Health Committee, State Senator Heather Somers (R-Groton) and Vice-Chair of the Public Health Committee, State Senator George S. Logan (R-Ansonia) released the following statement regarding the alleged abuse scandal at the Whiting Forensic Institute.

“Today I was proud to stand with my fellow lawmakers as we renewed our promise to get to the bottom of the systematic breakdown at the Whiting Forensic Institute,” said Sen. Somers. “These reports are gut-wrenching, they are horrific and they show a shameful relinquishment of employee management by the state.”

State lawmakers gathered at the Legislative Office Building today to shine light on the nine arrests and 31 suspensions at the Whiting Forensic Institute – information that has started to surface throughout the past month.

“These reports show an extreme lack of humanity, a culture of cruelty and a total disregard for common decency,” said Sen Somers. “By conducting a public hearing and getting to the bottom of this breakdown, my hope is that nothing like this will ever happen in our great state, ever again.”

“This failure of management is unacceptable and shows a reckless disregard for basic human rights,” said Sen. Logan. “While there are many dedicated employees at the Whiting Institute, even just one case of patient abuse is one too many. That is why it is imperative that as the leaders of the Public Health Committee we must find where the system of oversight has broken down and actively put procedures in place to fix it.”

Along with promising to hold a public hearing at the end of October, Senator Somers also sent a formal request of documents to the DMHAS Commissioner that will be critical in determining what changes will be required at the Whiting Forensic Institute moving forward.