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North Carolina Rehab Program Sent Clients To Work For No Pay At Adult Care Homes

For years, clients who sought treatment for addiction at a North Carolina-based rehab program found themselves in a system of exploitative labor, according to a new investigation by Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting.

The program Recovery Connections Community operated out of two facilities in Buncombe County and one in Harnett County. It was founded in 2011 by Jennifer Warren, an addictions counselor who was stripped of her license in 2012.

When clients arrived at the rehab centers, sometimes at the order of a judge, they found there was in fact no treatment. Instead they were expected to put in 16 hour days working at adult care homes, and they sometimes found themselves dispensing the same drugs they were addicted to.

Host Frank Stasio speaks with Reveal investigative journalists Amy Julia Harris and Shoshana Walter.

Laura Pellicer is a digital reporter with WUNC’s small but intrepid digital news team.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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