Dear Governor Gregoire,
I have been following the story of Lindsay [redacted] and her Mum, Stephany, on the latter's blog, for about two years, now. Frankly, I'm disheartened, and I really hope that you may be encouraged to look into this matter:
Top 100 state workers - one psychiatrist at Western State Hospital
I will state my position baldly, now: I don't believe that Lindsay has anything wrong with her, although I realize that I risk derision in saying so. I think the initial diagnosis, four-five years ago was incorrect, and I think that the way Lindsay has been treated, ever since, has made it inevitable that she is non-verbal, now.
Now, given that she is non-verbal, can it really make the tiniest scintilla of sense to ban her advocate from meetings? Given that she is not a prisoner, but a patient, and given that being forbidden outside time makes her anxious (explicitly so), why is Lindsay being held indoors? If "fresh air time" is being used as a tool of control, to gain compliance, then Dr Ruiz should have his credentials examined, to my view.
I will say, again: Lindsay is not a prisoner. According to the court that committed her to WSH, she is there for her own protection, because she is at risk of exploitation from society. I don't imagine that the court thought that WSH would seek to exploit her, too.
Dr Ruiz's coercive methods are counterproductive, in my view - he cannot hope to build the necessary trust that would enable him to treat patients. He's certainly no empath.
In summation, I think that this state of affairs is a travesty. Why is Washington State punishing this young woman for being vulnerable, because that is what this seems to amount to? I would urge you to investigate the treatment of patients at WSH, with all urgency, because Lindsay is one of the lucky ones: she's got people who care about her. All over the world.