aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

Undercooked lentils, lizards, scorpions, and trail mix

The folks at Putnam made me tone down what happened at Peaceful Cove, the overseas bootcamp where my main character ended up in my book Shock Point. They didn't believe the camps could be that bad.

Now Congress is having national hearings about what goes on in bootcamps stateside. A report by the GAO detailed evidence that teenagers were "starved, forced to eat their own vomit, and to wallow for hours in their own excrement."

The NY Times reports that the parents of one boy who died at a bootcamp in Utah said"they saw Northstar as a place that would distance Aaron from negative influences at his high school, where he had begun dabbling in drugs. But a “bloody and tattered journal” he was forced to keep as part of his therapy contained, instead of poetry, “an unbelievable account of torture, abuse and neglect,” Mr. Bacon said. Aaron had spent 14 of 20 days “without any food whatsoever,” while being forced to hike 8 to 10 miles a day. “On the days he did have food, it consisted of undercooked lentils, lizards, scorpions, trail mix and a celebrated canned peach on the 13th” day, Mr. Bacon said."

These are what some of these bootcamps are like here in the United States. One chain run by a former used car salesman has made a fortune putting their camps overseas, where the mistreatment of children is often overlooked - and where the kids often don't speak the same language as authorities.

There probably are some good camps. But I think more often they are not. And they are certainly not regulated.

Read more here.

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Tags: peaceful cove

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