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Rehab centres under investigation after complaints from staff and clients
The Addiction Canada Treatment Centre near Sundre and a second location in Glendon are under investigation by the RCMP after staff said they were not paid, and clients said they didn’t get what they paid for.
CTV has spoken to seven former employees including management who allege they were not paid, that medical staff were laid off and that clients were not provided with the care they were promised.
"It's heartbreaking, the staff there are phenomenal, we bent over backwards for our clients, we wanted the absolute best for them and we never got compensated for it,” said Jennifer Scheible, former employee.
"It's frustrating but we're glad and there's a lot of us, we've been talking quite a bit over the last couple of weeks and there's quite a few of us, there's over 20 on our list,” said Kevin Robar, former employee.
One former client says she paid $26,000 for her treatment.
“They promised there would be gym there, there was no gym. They promised us massage therapy so that we could have that any time of the day that we wanted, there was no massage therapist whatsoever. They promised meals that were five star kind of thing and I had to beg and plead to get stuff sent up to me,” said Wendy Caron, former patient. “It was horrible, I would have an Ann and Chris looking after me, and I would wonder if they would come in the next day because I didn’t know if they were going to get paid or not. So not only were you deathly ill you were thinking if this guy doesn't pay them I might not have them tomorrow.”
John Haines, the owner of Addictions Canada, also owns drug rehab facilities in Ontario, and describes himself as a former addict. Police in Ontario confirm Haines was charged with several offences in May for fraud and money laundering which police estimate at $6.1 million.
A spokesperson denied the allegations in an interview last week saying the company is restructuring and all bounced cheques have been replaced.
“By no means at all are any of the clients in any way shape or form in any type of danger or being not treated properly through their therapy," said George Hirschler, National Director, Addictions Canada.
CTV reached out to Haines and Addiction Canada about the RCMP investigation. In a statement, Hirschler said:
"We are not aware of any current RCMP investigation but if there is we will remain transparent and cooperative. As we at Addiction Canada maintain that we provide the very best in drug and alcohol addiction treatment as many of our successful past and present clients will attest to."
The Province of Alberta says it's still looking into the matter and trying to determine what role it may have with the organization.