the Straights dot com 
front page extension
by Wesley Fager (c) 2003

Straight rejected by Toughlove. Straight, Inc. claimed to be a Toughlove� program but in 1995 Phyllis York, the founder of Toughlove�, denounced Straight Inc.'s brutal methods in an article in Insight on the News. [Terri Nissley, CPA is President & CEO of the Straight legacy program Pathway Family Center in Detroit and Indianapolis. Ms. Nissley also conducts a Toughlove� parent support group for troubled teens.]

Straight and them Republicans� About now you might be wondering, "Oh, yeah, well if Straight is a cult then why was Nancy Reagan such a big Straight promoter that she visited Straight - St. Pete even though she knew that Straight - Atlanta was being sued by the ACLU for human rights violations? Why did Bush I make a TV commercial for Straight? Why did Bush II make Straight's founder the ambassador to Italy? Why is the President's brother, Florida's governor Jeb Bush on the advisory board for the new Straight which now calls itself Drug Free America Foundation?" Why did one White House drug czar become a paid Straight consultant and how did Straight's national medical researcher director become the drug czar?

Perhaps this can best be understood by looking at the Moonies. A few years ago many people thought of Reverend Moon's Unification Church as a cult also, but since Moon is a billionaire and a convicted felon who  owns the Washington Times, UPI, Insight on the News magazine, The World and I magazine, The New Yorker Hotel and the University of Bridgeport (CT); and since George and Barbara Bush get paid handsomely for going around the world making speeches for the Moonies maybe you can better understand. Mel Sembler Sembler raises money for the Republicans. The Republicans endorse the Straights. �Here's the strange story of the Republican Party and Straight.�
A hundred million dollar treatment charity for affluent white kids, some of whom did not need treatment
Admission workers were often urged to admit every potential client that walked in the door, regardless of substance abuse history.
Former Straight-Atlanta counselor Ashley Kilpatrick to the Atlanta Journal, April 3, 1992, p. E1.

According to Straight tax records, Straight took in $95 million dollars in tax free money from around 1980 to 1993.  What's more,  Straight targeted the children of affluent white parents as shown here. Disturbingly there is evidence that Straight treated children for problems some did not have:

  • In a letter dated August 8, 1991 from the Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse to Straight, Inc. the commission notified Straight it was denying its license stating, "It has been determined that Straight, Inc. has consistently failed to abide by the requirements of law. . ." One of the findings was that Straight treated clients who did not meet Straight's criteria of being chemically dependent or being in danger of becoming chemically dependent.
  • One of the findings of the prosecutor's office in Sarasota County, Florida investigating Straight - Sarasota was that Straight treated kids for addictions which they did not have.
  • When Massachusetts authorities closed Straight - Boston, they cited them for treating a 12 year old girl for drug addiction when Straight's own record showed that the only drugs she had used was that she had once sniffed a magic marker!
  • In "Short-Term Memory Impairment in Cannabis-Dependent Adolescents," American Journal of Diseases of Children 143 (1989): 1215 by Dr. Richard H. Schwartz, Straight-Springfield's Medical Research Director, Dr. Schwartz notes, without explanation, that children with no drug abuse problems are found in this "drug abuse" [e.g. Straight] program.
  • Straight forked over $220,000 for falsely imprisoning Fred Collins after Fred, an honor roll engineering student, had stopped by Straight - St Pete to pay his brother a visit. The Straight admissions counselor who ordered the detention testified that he made his decision because Fred's eyes were red! He also testified that he did not know what THC was! Today Fred Collins is a Ph.D. in mathematics. What was Straight treating him for? Do you think the police should have the right to arrest you if your eyes are red or if your nose is running?
  • Today Internet discussion forums are filled with stories of former clients at Straight who did not have a drug dependency problem. At this link former Straight graduates are renouncing their Straight graduate status in droves, many are claiming they never had a drug problem to begin with.
  • James, a former client at Straight - Atlanta, wrote the following in a discussion forum with Reason Magazine: He wrote that at his intake he told them that he had been sexually abused by no less than three adults (including a priest) over the prior five years - a clearly exogenic indicator, he writes. But Straight misdiagnosed him, he says, as having endogenic chemical dependency.
  • On September 28, 1986 Straight - Cincinnati placed an ad in the Cincinnati Enquirer advertising for an admissions counselor / intervention specialist. The only qualifications listed were: "sales and marketing experience."

Nancy. It's one thing to run a pyramid scam to get money from parents, it's quite another if anyone gets harmed beyond losing their money. In 1988 a 19 year old male student at Straight - Springfield had his finger placed in a cast because, he reported to authorities, they had bent it back until it nearly touched his wrist. Next year they took Bill Fager into a closet at the special Chelsea Square facility a mile away from Straight - Springfield. Bill was taken into a closet repeatedly for several nights where two boys held his arms and bent his fingers back while a third spat in his face while screaming questions at him. Questions like what drugs he had used and whether had he ever had sex with his mother or father. Bill finally started crying and told them his finger would break if they pulled it back any further and they stopped. Bill has been suicidal since Straight and is now diagnosed as schizophrenic. While Bill had used drugs, Nancy (not her real name) , a fellow inmate at Straight - Springfield, had not. When Straight ultimately released Nancy they admitted in writing that drug usage was not her primary problem. Exhibiting antisocial behavior Nancy's therapist had told her mother that maybe Nancy was using drugs, so her mother had placed her in Straight - Springfield. But Straight could not get Nancy to admit she had a drug problem. Finally Straight had had it with Nancy and on November 11, 1989 A. N., then an adult counselor at Straight, now a juvenile substance abuse counselor for the City of Fairfax, Virginia, selected six kids to accompany himself and Nancy into intake room #2. Later A. N. wrote in his follow-up report that while Nancy was being confronted, she started fighting and so A. N. and the six boys and girls had to defend themselves by restraining her. A. N. reported that several people, including himself, had been scratched. What had happened was they had taken Nancy to a time out room, screamed at her that she was fat and ugly and not pretty like her sister. They spat on her and bent her finger back towards her wrist. A Dr. Nejad noted on November 29, 1989 that X-rays of Nancy's hand showed "a condylar fracture with very minimal displacement". A Fairfax Hospital Emergency Room note of November 26, 1989 by Dr. Kathryn Kenders states "fracture phalanx, . . . middle or proximal". Both notes indicate that restraint was implemented with unnecessary roughness. They had pulled Nancy's finger back too far, thus breaking it. Nancy may not have had a drug or alcohol problem before Straight but she turned to alcohol after Straight Ten years later when they found her dead body at the foot of her apartment window she had the word DISCIPLINE tattooed above her wrist!

Kay Helms. Kay Helms' older sister was being treated by Straight - Atlanta for an addiction problem when Straight told Kay's mother that Kay was also a drug addict and that she must either enroll Kay into Straight or else remove her other daughter. This was a common part of the Straight scam where they would convince a parent that her child in treatment would die without Straight and then tell her to enroll other children or remove the one in treatment, but if they removed the one in treatment she would die! This disturbed Ms. Helms because she was not having problems with Kay, because Kay was a B level student, and because Kay was only 12 years old. How deep into drugs could a penniless, 12 year old little girl be? Furthermore she and her husband did not have the financial resources to enter another daughter into Straight. But Straight told her there was an anonymous donor who would cover Kay's treatment. Two and a half years later Kay Helms was still in treatment having reached the Fifth Phase of a five phase program. By then Straight had convinced Kay that she was a drug addict. Her parents finally caught on that she was there so Straight could receive money from Kay's anonymous benefactor and they withdrew her. One day after being withdrawn a Straight. counselor took Kay to a sporting event. Kay later told her mother that she was stunned because on the outing the counselor had made an amends to her telling her she (Kay) did not have a drug problem but that Straight had held her because it was receiving money from the donor. Kay had missed two years of schools while at Straight. and could not cope going back to school after Straight. She turned to drugs. One doctor diagnosed her as a borderline schizophrenic. Another diagnosed her as being depressed with psychotic manifestations�she had started hearing voices and seeing things that were not there. On July 6, 1996, four years after leaving Straight she stepped in front of an oncoming car on a highway near her mother's house. She was killed instantly

This web paged was designed and developed in 2000 by Wesley Fager. It was originally developed in FrontPage using frames. In 2001 Ginger Warbis  of converted it from frame to table-based. In 2002 Wes Fager converted it to table-based, newspaper format. In April 2003 Wes Fager rewrote the page in Macromedia's Dreamweaver. ��Click here for history of page counter adjustments and corrections.