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  #1  
Old 11-13-2010, 02:18 PM
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Default Can DOC change his court ordered treatment provider?

My bf was sentenced on a FTOW to DOC supervision, and to continue to see his counselor. The counselor was specifically named by the judge as the person to be his treatment provider. There were no court ordered instructions as to scheduling, ie, how often he had to see him,etc, nor any particular conditions in respect of supervision by DOC.

His CCO has interfered with his treatment so often that his counselor became frustrated with her, and told her he thought she did more harm than good. Her response was to tell my bf that his counselor decided to 'quit' and from now on he has to see someone of her choice. She says she will inform the court of the change 'out of courtesy.'

The counselor most definitely did not quit, but he is fed up with her, especially as she ignores everything he tells her.

Obviously my bf does not want to start seeing one of her pals, and since he and his counselor work very well together, change would not be beneficial.

Question is, can she do this? If not, what can he do to prevent it?? She said last week that the change is to be immediate, and he has to be seeing her choice of treatment provider by next week.

She has been deceitful and detrimental from the start, so if anyone should be replaced, it is her, not the counselor. Any ideas? Thank you!
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Old 11-16-2010, 10:48 AM
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My bf was sentenced on a FTOW to DOC supervision, and to continue to see his counselor. The counselor was specifically named by the judge as the person to be his treatment provider. There were no court ordered instructions as to scheduling, ie, how often he had to see him,etc, nor any particular conditions in respect of supervision by DOC.

His CCO has interfered with his treatment so often that his counselor became frustrated with her, and told her he thought she did more harm than good. Her response was to tell my bf that his counselor decided to 'quit' and from now on he has to see someone of her choice. She says she will inform the court of the change 'out of courtesy.'

The counselor most definitely did not quit, but he is fed up with her, especially as she ignores everything he tells her.

Obviously my bf does not want to start seeing one of her pals, and since he and his counselor work very well together, change would not be beneficial.

Question is, can she do this? If not, what can he do to prevent it?? She said last week that the change is to be immediate, and he has to be seeing her choice of treatment provider by next week.

She has been deceitful and detrimental from the start, so if anyone should be replaced, it is her, not the counselor.
This question seems similar to one asked in another forum. The CCO has every right to determine who the treatment provider is, and as I responded in the other post, it is very unprofessional for EITHER treatment professional to "trash talk" the other. From a counseling/treatment psychology standpoint it puts the client in the middle, and creates all kinds of tensions.

When treatment programs are paired with being under supervision, the CCO outranks the treatment professional, so whatever the CCO wants is what will happen. Your BF's counselor should be very aware of this.

I'm not sure how your BF became aware of a conversation between his counselor and the CCO, or of the counselor's opinion of the CCO, but if the counselor shared it - at many treatment facilities, that would be grounds for dismissal.
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Old 11-17-2010, 07:48 PM
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Default Can DOC change his court ordered treatment?

Thank you for taking time to answer my question. I understand a CCO would outrank a counselor, but the question is whether the opinion of a CCO outranks that of a superior court judge?

The counselor was specifically named by the judge in the J + S, he has been treating my bf awhile, and his credentials are impeccable. They work well together, and there has been no breach of obligation on his part to my bf, the court, or DOC, whereas the CCO has been unprofessional, obtuse, and dishonest from the start.

The counselor is understandably frustrated because she skews his professional opinion, then makes supervision decisions based on what she thinks, to the detriment of my bf. She has no psychiatric qualifications whatsoever, and is maneuvering to oust the counselor and replace him with one who will pay her lip service.

Professional integrity is not issue. The problem is: she plans to dump the counselor. The question is: what can we do to stop her?
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Old 11-17-2010, 08:09 PM
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Thank you for taking time to answer my question. I understand a CCO would outrank a counselor, but the question is whether the opinion of a CCO outranks that of a superior court judge?

The counselor was specifically named by the judge in the J + S, he has been treating my bf awhile, and his credentials are impeccable. They work well together, and there has been no breach of obligation on his part to my bf, the court, or DOC, whereas the CCO has been unprofessional, obtuse, and dishonest from the start.

The counselor is understandably frustrated because she skews his professional opinion, then makes supervision decisions based on what she thinks, to the detriment of my bf. She has no psychiatric qualifications whatsoever, and is maneuvering to oust the counselor and replace him with one who will pay her lip service.

Professional integrity is not issue. The problem is: she plans to dump the counselor. The question is: what can we do to stop her?
Pretty much nothing. The judge will always listen to the opinion of the CCO over any counselor. It doesn't matter what the CCO OR the counselor, does, what is very unprofessional and suspect is that the counselor seems to have included your BF in the conversation. Clients are NEVER, never to be put in the middle of these kinds of things - the counselor should handle it directly with the CCO, and if not able to get some understanding there, then communicate directly directly with the judge. If the counselor has communicated any of his personal feelings about the CCO to your BF, that would be a major, and serious problem in the treatment community. Professional integrity is at least part of the issue, from the way you have described the situation.

Your BF should never be privy to any of the conversation or personal feelings, at least from his counselor - because of the nature of the therapeutic relationship. That is not necessarily the case with the CCO, who does not have a "therapeutic relationship" with parole/probation clients. Her job isn't to do therapy, it's to monitor his compliance and behavior to a program. - All of these issues should all be settled between the two professionals.

One thing you could do is ask to make an appointment with the judge and have your BF share his frustration at the whole thing (your BF would have to do it, not you) and ask for the Judge's help, but be aware of what I mentioned previously - and I'm really serious about the breach of professional ethics by the counselor bringing ANY of this up with your BF. That may not sit well with the judge, especially if your BF is lobbying to stay with that particular counselor.
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Last edited by Scott; 11-17-2010 at 08:10 PM..
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Old 11-18-2010, 02:44 AM
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Default Can DOC change his court ordered treatment?

In defense of the counselor, he did not say anything derogatory about the CCO. The matter came to light through my bf's requests to see his own case files, to which he has a legitimate right in both instances. The discrepancies between the files were of a nature that precludes error or simple misunderstanding; the CCO's case notes knowingly misrepresent the truth.

To make an appointment with the judge, would he need to file a motion to request a determination, or something along those lines? I understand he would speak to the judge; this case is his not mine. I asked these things on his behalf because there is virtually nil computer access in the King County jail, so it is much harder for him to access legal advice.

Lastly, it was the CCO who started this, when she told my bf his counselor had quit. She is a monitor of criminals, so her concern should integrity, not his therapy.

I am really grateful for your input. Thank you.
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Old 11-19-2010, 12:50 AM
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To make an appointment with the judge, would he need to file a motion to request a determination, or something along those lines? I understand he would speak to the judge; this case is his not mine. I asked these things on his behalf because there is virtually nil computer access in the King County jail, so it is much harder for him to access legal advice.
I didn't realize he was in jail. That would make it very hard to get an appointment with the judge. Has he spoken with his attorney about the situation?
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Old 11-19-2010, 02:15 AM
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Default Can DOC change his court ordered treatment?

He'll be out tomorrow. He does not have an attorney, but we can file a motion for a hearing. I guess that would be the thing to do, I don't know if the judge would be amenable to an informal appointment.

His counselor has been great, and his support is invaluable to my bf. There is no legitimate reason to change treatment provider, so all we want is to ensure that he's allowed to comply with the judge's sentence, just as it was written, and continue to see his counselor. We aren't asking for anything unreasonable, we are just dealing with someone unreasonable-the CCO.
If this doesn't seem like the right way for us to proceed, please advise. Thanks!
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Old 11-19-2010, 12:53 PM
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His counselor has been great, and his support is invaluable to my bf. There is no legitimate reason to change treatment provider, so all we want is to ensure that he's allowed to comply with the judge's sentence, just as it was written, and continue to see his counselor. We aren't asking for anything unreasonable, we are just dealing with someone unreasonable-the CCO.
If this doesn't seem like the right way for us to proceed, please advise. Thanks!
Little bit of a sigh here...there are pro's and con's (no pun intended) about everything. First, (and I say this having worked with the recovery community since 1981, and currently as a contract instructor in a residential treatment facility, where I have taught on and off since 1997) I'm hearing a lot of attachment to this counselor, which is quite unusual if the counselor is making your BF do the hard work of dealing with addiction. Clients don't usually refer to their counselors in the terms you have described. So, my first thought as a professional working in the recovery community is "suspicion" that the reason your BF
"likes" the counselor so much is that he isn't having to do the difficult work. But - I certainly don't know that. It's just the first thought when you bring it up.

However, I don' know the circumstances and it's a wild and wacky universe so - maybe - whatever...but you should know that the more you bring this up and push it, regardless of what a schmuck the CCO may be, other people who deal with these issues day in and day out will feel the same thing. That may not ultimately bring you the result you want...

You have to recognize the politics of the situation - the CCO has the upper hand and the system which endorses the CCO's "power" isn't going to bad-mouth or disagree with the CCO's "opinion", because the CCO is its representative and to disagree would be to disagree with itself. And I probably don't have to remind you how many people on parole/probation regularly make the claim that the CCO is "this or that"...(usually negative).

So - take all that into account, know that however you approach the system, the "system" is going to "hear" the story through different filters - and have your BF decide whether it's better to just get through it, do what the CCO says and get off whatever supervision, or make this an issue and take the consequences for that. Perhaps the counselor would be willing to work with your BF in addition to whoever the CCO suggests....

Please don't think me overly critical - there's just so much more to read into what you wrote and I'm committed to trying to present all the angles. I certainly wish the best for your BF.
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Last edited by Scott; 11-19-2010 at 12:55 PM..
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Old 11-19-2010, 05:05 PM
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Default Can DOC change his court ordered treatment?

Hi Scott, I appreciate what you are saying, and I understand that proximity can color objectivity, so I am grateful for your opinion, and for taking time to help me.

Quite simply, too much has happened for me to adequately condense it in a few lines. He isn't an addict though, he is being treated for PTSD. The CCO does not agree with the diagnosis, and has imposed conditions, and sanctions, that have contravened treatment. To assuage her doubts, and in my bf's best interest, the counselor suggested a way to confirm the findings of the evaluation the court petitioned for sentencing. (the counselor did not conduct it)

His suggestion is that my bf have another evaluation, by someone independent of the court, himself, and the CCO, and then decide on appropriate treatment. If the second eval upholds the first, the counselor would continue the current plan, as he is a PTSD specialist.

The CCO wants to dismiss him regardless, and to choose who will conduct the evaluation. That does not seem fair to us, or appropriate for my bf.

Nor does it appear to be legal; RCW 9.94A.6333 directs CCOs to seek treatment providers' advice on the best course of action for offenders under their care, and to follow that advice.

Obey all laws, right?

Last edited by x.pat.riot.act; 11-19-2010 at 05:18 PM..
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