Arkansas looks into complaints of heat, bedbugs at children’s care home

Posted at 1:13 PM, Aug 07, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-07 15:13:17-04

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    Forrest City, AR (WREG) — An Arkansas facility that treats children with behavioral problems may have some problems of its own.

The Arkansas Department of Human Services is looking into complaints that some of the children are sleeping in a portion of the building that does not have air conditioning.

Someone inside Woodridge Behavioral Care of Forrest City shot video of what looks like some children sleeping on mats in a large open area.

The person who sent the video didn’t want to be identified, but says they’re concerned about the well-being of these boys who have spent the last three nights inside a gymnasium at the facility that doesn’t have air.

“It’s like real hot with one fan, and the fan is not circulating enough for all the kids. The way they’ve got it pointed, only a few kids can feel the air,” our source said.

Woodridge is a nearly 50-bed facility that treats children and adolescents with emotional and behavioral problems.

We are told about 10 boys between the ages of 5 and 9 were forced out of their room by bed bugs and have been sleeping there ever since.

Those who have been around the kids say they are miserable.

“They were like sweating too and complaining they were uncomfortable, and I told them there was nothing I really could too,”

The Arkansas Department of Human Services says its child care licensing unit is looking into the allegations. They said this is now an open licensing investigation.

The people who shot the video say they were told the kids could be sleeping like this for up to a month.

“One little boy even stated he wanted to go home. He was like a new boy. He hadn’t been here that long.”

The CEO of Woodridge released a statement saying in part, “The air conditioning outage only effected the gym area. The adolescents have been moved to the facility that is cool and comfortable.”

The statement also mentions that “a difficult case of bed bugs” was discovered in part of the facility, and it is currently being treated.

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