OnTrack to close teen residential program

OnTrack to close teen residential program

OnTrack Inc. will close its residential teen program and not allow former executive director Rita Sullivan to have any involvement in the business.

OnTrack, the Oregon Health Authority and the Oregon Department of Human Services signed a settlement agreement in September that spells out conditions for Southern Oregon's largest addiction treatment provider.

In the agreement, OnTrack agreed to close its teen residential program, which had been located at the corner of Holly and Fifth streets. DHS said the facility there was not safe or sanitary, according to the agreement.

OnTrack undertook major remodeling projects at some of its facilities and made changes after the state found "deplorable housing" and inadequate medical care for children living with parents in treatment.

OnTrack's application to OHA for a certificate to provide residential drug and alcohol treatment for teens at a new location in the 1500 block of West Main Street is pending, the agreement said.

The agreement includes a provision that Sullivan not be involved with OnTrack.

Sullivan was executive director of the organization for decades, building it into a major provider of addiction treatment.

The agreement states Sullivan "shall no longer be involved with OnTrack in any capacity whatsoever, including but not limited to tenancy at any OnTrack facility, or as a paid or unpaid consultant, advisor, employee, or as a volunteer, board member, or mentor to OnTrack employees, board members, contractors, or volunteers."

Sullivan was let go in February after being on administrative leave for three months.

In August, OnTrack was hit with a $7.87 million lawsuit claiming Sullivan was prone to expletive-laden confrontations with employees and others.

A February lawsuit seeking $2 million claimed an OnTrack counselor kicked and hit a client in an addiction treatment program for fathers.

In the settlement agreement, OnTrack also agreed to gradually allow women and children in their legal custody to take part in the HOME Program, also known as the Mom's Program. 

OnTrack undertook repairs at the 45-bed HOME Program facility on Delta Waters Avenue. Investigators had found significant health and safety risks, including a failure to send two infants with serious illnesses to the emergency room. 

Under the settlement agreement, OnTrack may initially admit up to seven women, including any children in their custody, to the HOME Program. OHA will conduct weekly visits to determine whether health and safety requirements are being met.

OnTrack must also submit weekly reports on a range of issues, including any medical issues involving women and children, incident reports, grievance logs, any maintenance issues, any personnel changes and plans for training new personnel, the agreement says.

If conditions are met or exceeded after 45 days of monitoring, OnTrack can admit five additional women, including any children in their legal custody, under the agreement.

After 30 more successful days, OnTrack can admit more women and children in their custody until the facility reaches capacity, the agreement says.

If standards are met or exceeded for 180 days, OHA may decide to discontinue weekly reporting requirements.

OnTrack is not allowed to admit any children who are in the physical care of their mothers but in the legal custody of DHS, unless OnTrack has written authorization from DHS in conjunction with approval by OHA. That condition will continue until DHS says in writing that prior written authorization is no longer required.

OnTrack, OHA and DHS agreed not to comment to the media about the settlement agreement, except to issue a prepared statement that the agreement is not an admission of wrongdoing by OnTrack and OnTrack denies allegations by OHA and DHS.

"The parties agree that DHS and OHA had a reasonable and good faith basis to investigate the allegations set forth in DHS' Notice of Intent to Revoke and OHA's Order Imposing Conditions," the statement says. "All parties recognize the need for cooperation and transparency in order to benefit the communities that OnTrack serves through its licensed programs. All parties have the goal of provision of the highest quality services for those communities."

A phone call to new OnTrack Executive Director Alan Ledford for an update on the status of the teen residential program and the HOME program for mothers with children was not returned by press time.

— Staff reporter Vickie Aldous can be reached at 541-776-4486 or Follow her at

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