Workers and soon-to-be-patients are left with nothing but questions after a Seymour rehab facility abruptly closed its doors this week.
Brookhaven Retreat, a private-pay treatment center, notified staff and patients via email Tuesday about its closure. The email from Brookhaven’s owner, Jacqueline Dawes, says it was happening due to circumstances beyond her control and everyone must vacate the property by 5 p.m. that same day.
A number of employees and soon-to-be patients contacted WATE 6 On Your Side to share their concerns. A man from Florida says his family spent thousands of dollars at this facility.
Les Thompson says he had plans to bring his wife to Brookhaven Retreat this week.
“It’s hurting my wife this morning. We’ve cried a lot about it. We cried a lot about this last night because we thought this was a chance for my wife to get better,” said Thompson.
The family says they’re confused, shocked and that they did not receive any notification that the facility was closing.
“Now she’s taking advantage of the same people she’s supposed to be trying to help,” said Thompson.
The Thompson’s say they made a $49,000 deposit for treatment in 2016.
“They’ve not earned any of the money and later on we sent them another $100,000 knowing my wife was going to stay for an extended program which they call the Lily program, which involved 90 days’ treatment,” added Thompson.
The family says they researched Brookhaven Retreat for years and spoke directly with its owner, Jacqueline Dawes, as well as the employees. Thompson says he trusted the facility.
“I know there’s a slim chance we’ll get that back but we’ll get over it. We’ll get around it,” he said.
Now the Thompsons say they plan on finding care at a treatment center out west and at the same time hope to find some kind of a solution to their troubles at Brookhaven.
“We’re going to do whatever it takes,” said Thompson.
Dawes’ her voicemail box was full as of Thursday afternoon. She has not responded to calls, voicemails or text messages.
The State Department of Labor and Workforce Development says they learned of the closure this Tuesday, the same day employees and patients were notified.
Employees said Wednesday were notified late last week they would not be receiving checks for the last pay period. The state says the Labor Standards Unit has no recourse to recover employee’s wages once an employer has closed the business.
The state says employees would have to seek payment of wages through General Sessions Court in their county. State records indicate Brookhaven Retreat reported 64 employees during the last quarter of 2018.