Big Write – Complaint Letter

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing to complain about your ”camp” more specifically Camp Green Lake  ,it has come to my attention that there are many risks that children are being faced with, such as ;dangerous  wild life ,unsanitary living conditions and much more.  My son, Stanley, has been at camp for not even a week, and yet he has already had many traumatic experiences from your ‘top-class’ camp. I was appalled to here about the conditions he is being kept in, and felt the need to write to you demanding that these issues are fixed. Health risks from the severe heat, risk of fatality from wildlife, lack of education or preparation for the future – How can sleep at night knowing that these are these are the daily issues for your campers. You job is a simple one, to look after and care for young offenders. From what I can see, you failing at this. I will be letting you exactly the problems are, and what I expect you and your staff to do about it.

In a letter I recently have received from my son Stanley Yelnats it described, ”the weather here is terrible its at least 100 degrees here and barely any water.” I hope this is just a over exaggeration, however I fear that it is not. Did you know that having water is one of our 30 human rights? I was shocked and horrified to find out that my son, along with the campers in your care, are having their water supply limited to such a extreme level. When working outdoors in the extreme heat, it is not unreasonable to expect the ability to get a drink of water whenever needed. However, at your camp this is not the case. In this letter I also found out that every day my son must wake up [before sun rise] and dig a hole exactly 5ft wide and 5ft deep. He also mentioned that this could take up to the whole day! I understand he has made some mistakes, but is it really necessary to put him through that torture everyday. I unclear also how digging a hole will help my son? All it seems to be is a waste of time, effort and energy, all of which should be spend learning or preparing him for the future. Not only have you wasted his time, but you have put him at severe risk. DO YOU KNOW THAT SPENDING THIS LONG IN THE SUN COULD GIVE YOU HEAT STROKE? Clearly you do know this, as you staff get the benefit of shade and air-conditioning! I do not understand why the children have not been given the same rights!

Another issue I feel the need to mention is that the living conditions are unacceptable  as the boys have to sleep in tents. These tents are not secured or offer the correct environment for the children, certainly not for those staying in them for over 18 months or longer! Not only this, but it seems you have squeezed in as many children as possible, so they do no have much space or room for themselves. Personal space and privacy are another two human rights that you are not giving my child. As if that was not bad enough, my sons cot smells like barf as the previous boy to have his cot had the nick name BARF BAG. It is utterly disgusting that you are making my son sleep in a stained and dirty bed, the lack of hygiene and risks to his health are severe!

Which brings me to my next complaint the nick names are very offensive my son mentioned a boy named Zero and how all the nick names have a meaning I think this is a unacceptable thing to allow as this can be used as bullying material. What can lower his self-esteem -what was low to begin with- this can also be called dehumanizing  . Stanley also write that he did not feel welcome when he first cane to the camp he said that one of the staff members even encouraged him to run away ,and said that if he does he will die because there is no water for miles so he will most likely dry up in the hot sun . Stanley is a very sensitive boy, and I had thought that your JCF would be better for his well-being than a jail cell. However, if he were to be picked on by the children and staff I am not sure of what the long-term impacts will be on his self-esteem.

The staff are also rude, the man who told my son this was Mr Sir. When Stanley first arrived, the first person that he talked to was him was this member of staff and if there is any thing that you should keep the same it is … Mr Pendanski he is the only thing that keeps the boys going as  he is polite and talks/treats the boys as actual humans not like some un-trained pet. I had been promised highly trained professionals, and what did i get? A wannabe cowboy with an attitude problem and a second mother! How are these two men going support and educate my son during his 18 month sentence? I was led to believe that he would be working with the best of the best, however he clearly not.

Speaking of animals you seem to have a divers amount of DEADLY ones in your camp I have received a piece of information that maid me hot red [out of anger]. You have rattle snakes and scorpions in your camp .But that’s not even the worst part ,do you know what is the worst part ? THAT THERE ARE DEADLY YELLOW SPOTTED LIZARDS ,yes you heard me this is a huge hazard because one bite from that thing and you will die a slow and painful death .

I hope you have learnt something from this and you will act immediately or I will have to take further steps involving legal action. I wonder how a judge would feel about the many human rights violations that are being committed daily at you camp? If i do not here back by the end of the week, i will be writing to my lawyer and taking this further. Some of the problems at your camp will be easy to fix; others will need some serious work and effort.

From your most unsatisfied and dissappointed parent,

MRS Yelnats

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