ITEAM: Rejected in Baton Rouge, psychiatric facility finds new fight near Clinton
EAST FELICIANA PARISH, La. (WAFB) - Facing backlash and delays while securing a home for a new psychiatric facility, leaders for the proposed Harmony Behavioral Health Center have filed a lawsuit to push the process forward.
Leaders for the center accuse East Feliciana Parish government of improperly denying their construction permits. The lawsuit says the center must be up a running by June, so its filers are requesting that the court force East Feliciana Parish to approve the permits.
Homeowners living near the site on Grace Lane have expressed concerns that the center could be a safety threat.
The facility was pitched as an inpatient hospital for mentally ill adults through a partnership with the Louisiana Department of Health, including adults with “aggressive and dangerous behaviors.”
Homeowners in Baton Rouge fought the original plan to open the center in their city on Sumrall Drive, arguing the site was too close to neighborhood schools. In response, Harmony moved on from that site back in January.
RELATED: Plan scrapped for psychiatric facility that could house ‘dangerous’ mentally ill patients in North Baton Rouge
A judge has scheduled an April date to hear arguments from the lawsuit. Some residents plan to raise the issue at a Zoning and Planning meeting scheduled to happen Tuesday in East Feliciana Parish.
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