In August 2014, I copied reviews of South Bay Mental Health that I found on Glassdoor, which I thought would be useful to illustrate the need for Says-Us. I was surprised to see that South Bay practices towards employees, and through their employees, towards clients, did not seem to have improved.
It showed that expression of grievances, while necessary, were not necessarily sufficient to cause management to change. Glassdoor does not highlight negative reviews because they sell services to employers. To change management workplace practices, we would need to expose the most egregious forms of poor management and employer abuse of employees and clients, and find other organizations to help do that. We would need to find more caring and useful forums than Glassdoor.
In the negative 2014 reviews from Glassdoor, you could see a lot of passion and detail in what people wrote. I saw that as a possible step towards change.
Then, on January 26, 2017, I received an email from Glass door called “RE: Demand to Cease and Desist Unauthorized Use of Glassdoor Content at http://saysus.net/southbay-2014/” This email demanded that I remove the Southbay related content or else Glassdoor “will take appropriate steps to to (sic) ensure that our content is removed from saysus’ website(s) and that Glassdoor obtains compensation for any damages suffered.” Their demand and threats did not express any concern about Southbay employees or clients.
I have edited the content below to comply with their demand. I don’t know if the original content still exists on Glassdoor, or if it has been removed by them. If you are interested, you may be able to find it there or possibly elsewhere on the Internet.
Here are brief summaries of the content I removed. They don’t do justice to the original clinician writings. They are in reverse chronological order. I use the female pronoun because most to SBMH clinicians are female, and the reviews do not state gender.
On July 12, A former staff therapist in Attleboro, MA cited long hours, “extremely low pay”, completing paperwork by hand and receiving no mileage reimbursement. She tells that co-workers were on antidepressants and illegal drugs to cope with job stress. She accuses South Bay of being unethical.
July 6, a senior clinician in Brockton, MA accuse SBMH of not being patient centered and said that it was “nearly impossible” for her to use approaches that are supported empirically. She called SBMH “a money-making factory”.
On June 24, a former staff therapist opined that “It’s not worth it to work there”. She complained that management withheld payment if clients no-showed and made threats of disciplinary action if there were more no-shows, inspite of the fact that clinicians have little control over clients showing up. She went on to say that the working environment caused so much stress and took so much time that her self-care deteriorated.
On June 11, a current employee warned, “KEEP YOUR SANITY AND SELF RESPECT. DON’T (come to work at SBMH)” She called the company “human cattle pusher”, says that the company lies to prospective employees in their interviews claiming opportunites for advancement when there are none.
A former employee cautioned, on June 9, that those considering SBMH should not waste their time. (S)he points out that SBMH will reduce employee status to part time, losing benefits, if they do not make their numbers, which are themselves unreasonable. She characterizes some of the homes she must go into as “unsafe” and points out that necessary supervision is unpaid.
On June 2, someone titled their review “Class Action Lawsuit” and pointed to low morale and a huge turnover which affects client care. She says that there is already a class action lawsuit occurring. She called management and supervisors “unqualified”, said that therapists were told to use the bathroom to make personal calls, never received breaks, and could seldom access the few computers available to do mandatory notes, and ended her review saying, “this place breaks you. It’s horrible”.
An April 18 entry by a former employee starts with “Do NOT work here!” She repeats many of the same charges against SBMH, says that she worked 50 hours each week to only get paid for 12. And ends with “This place takes advantage of young, intelligent women newly out of school.”
Another April 18th entry says that those considering SBMH should “RNNNN” away from it. She repeats many of the complaints listed above, emphasizes that those providing supervision are unlicensed, money hungry, and unprofessional, and sympathizes with clients who have to constantly start their therapy over due to clinician turnover.
An April 13th review cites another review that compares working at SBMH as being in an “abusive relationship. Her detailed, 2 page review, deleted here because of Glassdoor’s threats against me, is worth reading in its entirety, if it is still findable on Glassdoor. She suggested asking teachers and non-SBMH professionals that they think about SBMH. She points out that SBMH managers are putting phoney positive reviews up onto Glassdoor in order to raise SBMH’s ratings. She also lists job hazards like fleas, roaches, and bedbugs.
Another negative review on April 12 saying that everyone is “dying to get out”.
On April 11 a reviewer called SBMH the worst place she ever worked and called getting through her work day, “a miracle”.
On April 3rd a current staff therapist said that she and other fee-for-service workers were “treated like crap” and she found supervisors to be controlling and patronizing.
A March 12th review called SBMH management “worst administration ever” and suggested working there only if you want to be treated like utter shit
On February 26, a former employee added supervisory – employee boundary breaches, including inappropriate behavior, to other complaints.
The first review in this series, from October 3, 2013, guaranteed clinician burn-out in the title. She complained about being personally responsible to make up time for no-shows, and said that the focus of management was on billable hours, not client care. She accused management of breaking CBHI rules, and possibly, the law.