We, the undersigned, would like to bring to your attention the following problems and their proposed solutions:
COVID-19 has presented unprecedented problems for the community and businesses that function within it. Businesses are required to operate in accordance with the Standard Operating Procedures and Recovery-Oriented Practices to ensure that their venture does not cause or contribute to the harm caused to the community. Said Standard Operating Procedures and Recovery-Oriented Procedures have been clearly defined within the California COVID guidelines and outlined by California Department of Public Health. It is therefore highly regretful to see the extent of abuse and sheer negligence carried out by some agents and/or employees of Optimum Health Institute (OHI).
Optimum Health Institute is a non-profit healing ministry of the Free Trinity Church. It provides holistic programs for physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being. As an organization that has incorporated the principles of 'Trustworthiness, Respect, Empowerment and Alignment', its response to Covid-19 has been a complete violation of its principles.
There is evidence to prove that the organization has been concealing and misrepresenting facts about positive tests amongst community, putting all the guests and their families at risk. Three known cases had been confirmed between 12th December 2020 and 8th January 2021, during which guests could check-in and out without any warnings.
Subject One Brett xxx had been in contact (at times masks off) with other guests. He had been taken to the hospital 24 hours after complaints of severe symptoms in an ambulance with its sirens off, contrary to normal procedure. Guests and OHI staff members who had revealed or requested information about this incident were reprimanded and silenced by the owner of OHI, Mr. Robert Neese and management Mr. Chris Gallina.
After complaints were lodged, mandatory testing was carried out in total disregard of the correct testing procedure under the supervision of individuals not qualified to perform the tests: mouthwash gargle for 10 seconds then spit. Results were retuned in two days followed by a second round of testing. First round of testing was reported to have showed negative results for all who tested. The second test results where to return that Friday by 4pm in which guests where told no news is good news. OHI management intentionally concealed the second Covid-19 test results. Meanwhile two other Covid 19 positive cases where discovered on site and were being kept secret by OHI admin. Subject Two Kim xxx , was the second to get notified of her positive results in private by OHI management. Kim was a 3 week guest at OHI and started showing symptoms 5 days after Subject One was rushed to the hospital. CEO Robert Nees made a threat of retaliation against Subject Two that if she continued to inquire about Subject Ones results and or share information about her positive results that she would be asked to leave not to return. Shortly thereafter Subject Two was asked to make her own arrangements and pressured to conceal the result. Subject Two had the right to choose whether or not to reveal her Covid-19 results. The organization acted in violation of this right. There is a very similar story for Subject Three who was informed she tested positive Friday night at 10pm by Mr Chris Gallina. Mr. Gallina misrepresented the details of Subject Three's Covid-19 test by telling her that there is no relationship to the positive Covid test and Subject One's positive Covid test and that Subject 3 was the only other positive test. Subject Three was asked to quarantine and told that if she did not receive symptoms in 48 hours that she would not be contagious. Subject Three gave Mr Gallina a list of persons whom she was in close contact and Mr Gallina assured Subject Three that he would be notifying guests that evening. Mr. Gallina did not fulfil this promise. However, Subject Three wrote a personal letter to all guests the next morning, after which guests started demanding tests, while others started leaving without them. Subject Three was also asked to make her own arrangements at a local homeless shelter to quarantine.
As a result of these incidents, frustrated guests sent letters expressing disappointment and demanding reimbursement from the OHI administration. OHI management, CEO Robert Nees, and OHI board members intentionally and negligently failed to act.
Scapegoating and misinformation became the norm. Guests were told that if they do not show symptoms in 48 hours, they were not contagious and were made to wait days before testing again for confirmations. It seems that the working staff at OHI has been compromised as well.
The following were the violations of state and local COVID-19 guidelines outlined by the chain of events described above:
1. Neglect of legal and moral obligation to protect vulnerable guests through transparency.
2. Dissemination of misinformation regarding the COVID-19.
3. Refusal to provide safe shelter to quarantine within vicinity to prevent further spread.
4. Failure to enforce COVID SOPs as outlined by California Department of Health Guidelines including but not limited to, informing guests that there were Covid-19 infected individuals on property, identifying anyone who had contact, and immediately implementing 100% masking and social distancing of all guests, and immediate isolation of anyone exposed to the virus.
5. Pressure on community to conceal information and blatant lies regarding the situation.
It must also be noted that the opening of massage and colonics was prohibited and a stay-at-home order was put in place. All guests of OHI are visiting based on essential travel and have the right to the highest degree of safety and wellbeing.
Moreover, it has been alleged that Mr. Bob Nees and Board Members have routinely participated in fraudulent activities using the organization's non-profit status. While the campaign to collect donations is strong and active, there have been little to no repairs at the facility, staff pay has been cut and prices for guests have been raised. There have been multiple reports that OHI management have used intimidation tactics on all members of the community who challenge their authority and fiscal integrity.
All those involved, particularly the leadership of OHI, must be held liable for this gross negligence and widespread harm to the community.
Accordingly, the undersigned demand the following:
1. Full compensation for all expenses and damaged incurred by the community, i.e. guests.
2. Resignation of the following:
a. Robert Nees JR - CEO
b. Larry Taylor – Executive Director
c. Chet Swanson – Board Member
d. Kent Graham – Board Member
e. Chris Gallina will further be held liable for his actions despite his "resignation"
In times as unprecedented and dangerous as these, we cannot afford to turn a blind eye to blatant negligence, abuse of power and pressure groups. Complacency and involvement in such actions should be dealt with to the highest degree to set a precedent for other groups in the community and the future.