The Rutherford House

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About Us

The Rutherford House residential facilities have been organized as alternatives to traditional and sometimes distant training school institutions. Juveniles who have come to the attention of local courts are eligible for intake consideration. It is our belief that youth in trouble can benefit from treatment in a program that provides for removal from the home on a short-term basis. During this time the adolescent becomes a resident and with the family, participate in a comprehensive program aimed at reintegration of the resident into his/her home. If re-integration is not possible or advisable, our staff will recommend another placement based on the needs of the individual resident. Rutherford House is in compliance with the Prison Rape Elimination Act to ensure the rights and safety of our residents.

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Facilities

RUTHERFORD HOUSE GENERAL DESCRIPTION

The Rutherford House five (5) residential facilities have been organized as alternatives to traditional and sometimes distant training school institutions. Juveniles who have come to the attention of local courts are eligible for intake consideration. It is our belief that youth in trouble can benefit from treatment in a program that provides for removal from the home on a short term basis. During this time the adolescent becomes a resident at our agency and with the family, participate in a comprehensive program aimed at reintegration of the resident into his/her home. If reintegration is not possible or advisable, our staff will recommend another placement based on the needs of the individual resident.

HISTORY OF THE FACILITIES

Rutherford House for girls began operation in July of 1974 as a temporary home for status offenders and neglected children. Expansion into a second facility for girls occurred in 1977. The first male facility was opened in 1975 for short-term care. A second boys program was opened in 1978. A short and long term foster care component began in 1980. A fifth group home was opened in May of 1991. Rutherford House now operates four homes for boys and one for girls. The five homes are licensed as Louisiana type "A" residential programs. Placement is open to children regardless of race or religion whose needs cannot be met through traditional community resources. All facilities are "open" and children are never locked into a facility. The program is governed by a fifteen member Board of Directors and is financed by the Louisiana Department of Juvenile Justice, both public and private grants, and the Department of Education. Private contributions are solicited to provide necessities above the state reimbursement level. Rutherford House is a non-profit organization and has been awarded tax exempt status. (501) (C) (3).

DESCRIPTION OF FACILITIES

Rutherford House I is located at 636 Herndon. It is a one story frame house (2245 square feet) built in 1900. The building houses a maximum of 13 boys. There are 6 bedrooms, 1 community bathroom, a living room, a dining room, a kitchen, a den, and an office. Rutherford House II is located at 217 Rutherford Street and was built in the 1930's. It is a two-story frame house (2,800 square feet). The building houses a maximum of fourteen boys. There are six bedrooms, seven bathrooms, a living room, a dining room, a kitchen, a den and an office. This facility is designed for boys who are in the final stages of placement in Rutherford House and have demonstrated steady progress in our program. Rutherford House III is located at 553 Stoner, and is a two-story wood frame building, approximately 4,500 square feet. It can house up to fourteen boys and was built in the 1930's. Along with a three room apartment, the building contains five large student bedrooms, one group bathroom and two small bathrooms, a kitchen, dining room, an office and hall reception area. Rutherford House IV is located at 618 Herndon and is a three-story brick house with 5,000 square feet built in 1898. It can accommodate up to fourteen boys. In addition, there are six bedrooms, one group and two small bathrooms, kitchen, a dining room, a den, and an office area in the house. Rutherford House V is located at 657 Wyandotte and is a one-story building with 2,000 square feet of living area and was built in 1929. There are three student bedrooms, large bath, kitchen, recreation room, dining room and staff offices. This facility is designed for intensive supervision of 6 to 9 girls. Each house has its own laundry facilities, is climate controlled and all group homes are within walking distance of city bus routes, hospitals and our on-grounds school component. The group homes are utilized basically for free time and sleeping. Most treatment, educational and recreational services occur at our main building, located at 1707 Line Avenue. This 40 year old facility has over 16,000 square feet of space and houses: Administrative offices, intake and treatment areas, six classrooms, a complete gymnasium, stage, a commercial kitchen, dining room, 3 bathrooms, staff offices and storage facilities. A side building is utilized for counseling services. In addition the agency operates a curfew center and a truancy/misdemeanor center located at 546 Olive. Our vocational center now houses, in its over 35,000 square feet of space, carpentry, small engine, auto repair, welding, and computer labs for computer assisted instruction. Recent grants and donations have been used to purchase the latest in job training equipment.

TREATMENT/DISCHARGE POLICYS

Upon entrance an Individual Treatment Plan is made for each resident. This treatment plan is developed in conjunction with the OJJ's plan and is devised to address the problem areas that the resident has experienced. Methods are also shown that will hopefully remediate these deficiencies and allow each resident to successfully reintegrate into his/her community. Our program is designed with three levels to indicate the progression of each resident through Rutherford House. The Basic level is designed for new residents and those that have shown severe problems such as fighting or running away. The Intermediate level is for residents who have demonstrated the ability to abide by the rules of the courts and Rutherford House. Residents who have had problems on the advance level may be demoted to this level. The Advanced level is reserved for those residents that are nearing successful completion of our program and are preparing to go home or to an independent living situation. Daily evaluations along with bi-monthly staff meetings are held to note and discuss each resident's progress within the program. Monthly reports and meetings between the OJJ worker, resident and agency staff are utilized to measure progress. Residents are tested for academic placement, vocational interests, and self esteem levels when they are placed and when they complete our program. Once a resident has completed our treatment program, a letter is sent to the OJJ office and to the court of original jurisdiction requesting a trial home placement. If requested by OJJ, an aftercare plan will be presented which will involve the resident and family in the continued services of our agency. (These services may be limited if the resident involved lives a great distance from our agency) Placement referrals may be made to Rutherford House by OJJ for re-admission to our program. These requests are usually made for two reasons: 1. Failure of the resident to successfully re-integrate into the community 2. The resident has been referred back to Rutherford House after an intervening placement. Residents are discharged prior to completing our program for two basic reasons: 1. The resident has reached his/her full term date and is discharged 2. Unsuccessful placement

AFTERCARE

Aftercare services will be provided for a minimum of 90 days after release from residence. These services may include continued, individual counseling, family counseling, mentors, job referrals and evaluation of school progress. Records are kept for six months to track recidivism. After successful completion of the Rutherford House program, our staff will contact the resident and guardian to determine "successful placement." 1) The resident will be in an educational program or employed. 2) He/she will not have had any new convictions for illegal activities other than minor traffic violations with either the juvenile or adult system.

Services

All services provided by our agency are intended to help the adolescent improve his/her chances of becoming a law abiding, employable resident of a community, not just a consumer of public services.

Compliance with Prison Rape Elimination Act

In compliance with the Department of Justice Rutherford House exercises zero tolerance toward sexual abuse, sexual harassment and physical harm. Residents have a right to have a safe, helpful and caring environment. There will be no retaliation for reporting any legitimate incidents of abuse, neglect or harassment. All complaints will be investigated according to the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003. A resident may report abuse or harassment to a Direct Care Staff, a Program Director or an Administrative Staff. A grievance box and a "hot line" are also provided. Rutherford House has a MOU(Memorandum of Understanding) with Project Celebration to report outside the facility any violation to the PREA standards.

PREA Rutherford House Juv LA 5_2016
Prea Report 2018

Agency Policy

In compliance with Section 115.322 of the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Standards, Rutherford House has provided policies to ensure referrals of allegations for investigations.

Investigations

In compliance with PREA Policy 115.322, the Shreveport Police Department will conduct all criminal investigations due to sexual abuse or physical harm. Employees, contract staff, volunteers, and vendors who engage in sexual contact or sexual misconduct or harassment with a resident will be terminated and referred for criminal prosecution when applicable.

Reporting Abuse

If you suspect sexual abuse has happened at Rutherford House, you may call the Director, Ira Tieuel at 318-222-0222, one of the Assistant Directors, Dorthea Palmer-Foster or Patrick Payne 425-3303 and 862-1045 or the Shreveport Police Department at 318-673-7020. We have advocacy through the "Project Celebration" which is a sexual assault center. Abuse or suspected abuse may also be reported to their hot line number which is 318-227-7900. If you feel a resident is being abused you may also contact the Office of Juvenile Justice Family and Community Liaison at 1-800-584-3941 or the Investigative Services Hotline at 1-800-626-1430. All reports of criminal sexual abuse or assault are investigated by the Shreveport Police Department.

Data Review for Corrective Action and Publication

In compliance with Section 115.388 of the PREA Standards, Rutherford House has reviewed data collected and aggregated pursuant to Section 115.387 in order to assess and impose the effectiveness of its sexual abuse prevention, detection, and response policies, practices, and training, including: 1. Identifying problem areas 2. Taking corrective action on an ongoing basis 3. Preparing an annual report of its findings and corrective actions Also, in compliance with Section 115.389 of the PREA Standards, Rutherford House shall make all aggregated sexual abuse data readily available to the public at least annually. Audit Report Rutherford House will be audited pursuant to Section 115.401 of the PREA Standards. That report will be accessible after the audit is complete.

EDUCATIONAL/VOCATIONAL PROGRAMS

Rutherford House offers residents an innovative on grounds school concept in cooperation with the Caddo Parish School System. Courses required for graduation from either Junior High or High School are taught by both teachers provided by Caddo Parish and Rutherford House Staff. Vocational counseling/education and a HiSet (formerly GED) program are also available. Our main school program is part of the Caddo Public School System with credits earned fully accepted at any other public school. A summer program supported by Rutherford House allows residents to earn additional credits. The school awards grades at all secondary levels, grades 7-12. We also maintain a non-graded special education department. Regular ceremonies are held to recognize individual academic and/or athletic achievement. Virtually all Rutherford House residents attend our school. Caddo Parish supplies six main-stream and one special education teacher along with two aides. Special tutors, the HiSet (formerly the GED) program, physical education, vocational education and computer basic skill instruction are handled by Rutherford House staff. Most of our residents are functioning below the seventh grade level with many at or below the third grade level. If possible, parents are involved in the academic plan for their child. The HiSet program is operated by Rutherford House with the final test being administered by Caddo Parish School System. Students study at Rutherford House with a certified instructor and counselor until test scores are high enough to indicate that they can pass the HiSet. If the HiSet is awarded and the resident is not ready for home placement, he/she is then placed in a paid work situation at Rutherford House, paid work in the community, or goes into a post secondary education program. Summer paid work opportunities are generally provided by our agency. Residents unable to earn regular school credit or work successfully toward a HiSet are placed in the Rutherford vocational programs. Currently our agency operates a basic construction program together with a small engine/auto repair shop.

INDIVIDUAL, GROUP AND FAMILY COUNSELLING

All members of the treatment team participate in formal and informal counseling sessions. Presently a Board Certified M.S.W. and a licensed professional counselor design each resident's ISP and Masters level counselors implement the various strategies. At minimum each student assigned by OJJ receives twenty hours of individual, family and/or group counseling. Rutherford House utilizes both off campus and on campus drug counseling and therapy. Residents are assessed upon entry into Rutherford House concerning possible drug abuse. Residents that are determined to need specialized drug counseling or therapy are assigned to drug groups which normally meet on a weekly basis. All residents receive drug education. Residents who have been identified as victims of crime -usually physical and/or sexual abuse -are counseled on a weekly basis by the Crime Victims Counselor.

RECREATION

Both inside and outside recreational activities are designed to develop skills, coordination, and sportsmanship. Team sports include volleyball, basketball, softball and bowling. Our agency developed and oversees a sports league utilizing local group homes for inter-agency competition This program encourages all residents to participate, not just those with athletic ability. Games are played at the Rutherford House gymnasium and a field provided by the City of Shreveport for our use. Each living facility has an outside basketball net and playing area. Leisure time activities include: board games, dominoes, bingo, card and electronic games. Limited television viewing is permitted, dependent on progress level and other activities. Family rated DVDs are provided for non-school night use. Residents who are making progress in treatment are taken to local movie theaters, high school and college sporting events, swimming, skating and local cultural activities.

VOLUNTEER PROJECTS

In an attempt to teach our residents to be socially responsible, all placements at Rutherford House are involved in weekly volunteer projects. Other non-profit groups may request assistance from our residents. Volunteer projects are generally scheduled for Saturdays.

INDEPENDENT LIVING SKILLS

Upon entry into Rutherford House residents begin to learn skills necessary to live independently. All staff members are considered teachers. They offer training in proper personal hygiene; clothing/personal needs purchasing, household chores, laundry and food preparation. In addition, computerized programs and formal classes offer further assistance in developing a workable plan for independence. Rutherford House currently employs an instructor to teach independent living skills utilizing the Education Associates Program. Ansell Casey Independent Living Skills Assessment to determine needs. The T.A.B.E. (Test of Adult Basic Education) is used to determine grade level strengths and weaknesses in math, reading and language.

EDUCATIONAL/VOCATIONAL PROGRAMS

Rutherford House offers residents an innovative on grounds school concept in cooperation with the Caddo Parish School System. Courses required for graduation from either Junior High or High School are taught by both teachers provided by Caddo Parish and Rutherford House Staff. Vocational counseling/education and a HiSet (formerly GED) program are also available. Our main school program is part of the Caddo Public School System with credits earned fully accepted at any other public school. A summer program supported by Rutherford House allows residents to earn additional credits. The school awards grades at all secondary levels, grades 7-12. We also maintain a non-graded special education department. Regular ceremonies are held to recognize individual academic and/or athletic achievement. Virtually all Rutherford House residents attend our school. Caddo Parish supplies six main-stream and one special education teacher along with two aides. Special tutors, the HiSet (formerly the GED) program, physical education, vocational education and computer basic skill instruction are handled by Rutherford House staff. Most of our residents are functioning below the seventh grade level with many at or below the third grade level. If possible, parents are involved in the academic plan for their child. The HiSet program is operated by Rutherford House with the final test being administered by Caddo Parish School System. Students study at Rutherford House with a certified instructor and counselor until test scores are high enough to indicate that they can pass the HiSet. If the HiSet is awarded and the resident is not ready for home placement, he/she is then placed in a paid work situation at Rutherford House, paid work in the community, or goes into a post secondary education program. Summer paid work opportunities are generally provided by our agency. Residents unable to earn regular school credit or work successfully toward a HiSet are placed in the Rutherford vocational programs. Currently our agency operates a basic construction program together with a small engine/auto repair shop.

NUTRITIONAL AND MEAL PROGRAM

Breakfast and lunch are served in the Rutherford House cafeteria during the week. Night meals are provided at the agency cafeteria as well as local restaurants. New residents and residents not making progress in our program are served at the agency cafeteria. Those residents who are doing well are often given the opportunity to eat dinner off campus. All meals are supervised by Rutherford House staff. All meals are supervised by a licensed nutritionist and the School food Service. Menus are written in advance, filed and maintained for at least one year.

NON-DENOMINATIONAL CHURCH

Since many of our residents are restricted to Rutherford House property, especially during the initial stages of placement, our agency developed a non-denominational church program that is in session on Sunday mornings. The material presented stresses values and the importance of helping others. Rutherford House staff volunteers their time to this program. Non-traditional religious sects can be accommodated by on campus visits by the appropriate spiritual leaders.

MEDICAL AND DENTAL NEEDS

Rutherford House utilizes the state medical card and relies on local providers for routine care and Schumpert Highland Health Center for emergency care. Fortunately, the Shreveport area has an abundance of professionals who accept the card for most medical needs. Rutherford House employs a registered nurse and contracts with a psychiatrist who together supervise the medical needs of the agency.

Wellness

Wellness Policy

1707 Line Avenue Shreveport, La. 71101

+1 318-222-0222

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