New Oakland Family Centers are planning on building a number of short-term mental health facilities for children in Livonia, and this has been met with resistance from the local planning commissioners and the police.
These facilities, which aim to assist young people who have anxiety or eating disorders, have not been welcomed by the public that lives next to them.
CONCERNS FROM PLANNING COMMISSIONERS AND POLICE DEPARTMENT
The proposed location was too close to residential areas as reported by Livonia’s Planning Commissioners.
That is why on Tuesday 16th of January they voted against it recommending that Livonia City Council throws away the plan.
The Livonia Police Department also advised against the proposal for constructing the mental health units.
In a letter to the city, Livonia Sgt. Paul Walters expressed concern about how this could affect residents’ quality of life.
He referred to disturbances, assaults, runaways and calls for medical assistance associated with these kinds of mental health facilities.
During their deliberations, some residents voiced their opposition pointing out such issues among them.
According to James Crowley: “We need services for mental health… but again I think that site and zoning is inappropriate.”
If anything, there is a sense of fear among inhabitants when it comes to having these premises near their homes.
SPECIFICS OF THE PROPOSAL
New Oakland Family Centers intends to convert two empty office buildings on Five Mile Road into short-term inpatient hospital facilities.
These wards would serve minors through providing treatment spanning less than seventy-two hours with an emphasis on voluntary patients being those who come from unsafe dwellings or cover long distances for care.
Such dormitories are supposed to be open around the clock because there will be continuous monitoring.
REBUTTAL FROM NEW OAKLAND FAMILY CENTERS
The dorms do not pose any danger towards neighboring occupants as Greg Sendi contradicted fears expressed over their safety.
He said these facilities targeted patients who came there voluntarily and not violent people.
Such cases mostly involve young women and girls with eating disorders or individuals suffering from bipolar and anxiety disorders clarified Sendi.
COMPARISON WITH EXISTING SERVICES
New Oakland Family Centers, with a proven record, already runs an identical programme in Waterford Township.
Having provided psychological counselling services for many years, the organization can take up this problem proactively to cater for the people’s desires and interests of Livonia dwellers and their government.
To reinforce the above argument, New Oakland Family Centers can rely on its Waterford Township facility as a testimony of positive outcomes.
The organization can prove that it has the capability to manage and deter any interruptions that may arise from mental health problems by demonstrating how effective their mental health program is.
Thus, affirming their dedication to both patients’ lives and welfare of the neighboring area.
By displaying its triumphs in Waterford Township, it can also show New Oakland Family Centers as a responsible and dependable provider of psychiatric services.
This tactical approach will be very important in creating trust among inhabitants of Livonia and dealing with concerns that are held by local authorities over planned mental healthcare centers in their region.
LIVONIA CITY COUNCIL DECISION
The decision whether to go ahead with the proposed mental health facilities will rest with the Livonia City Council who will discuss the matter during their study session on Monday, January 29th.
Therefore, this will depend on how much attention has been paid to both the community’s concerns as well as what New Oakland Family Centers have brought forward.
In conclusion, the conflict between the growth strategies of New Oakland Family Centers and the concerns of people living in Livonia shows how important it is to bring mental health facilities into residential areas carefully.
Though there is a need for these services, the task at hand is to deal with legitimate qualms about interferences that might arise with regards to community welfare.
The outcome of this will be determined by the Livonia city council’s forthcoming decision as to whether these contemplated short-term children’s psychiatric homes will have a place in Livonia community or not.