Client Rules and Guidelines

American Behavioral Health Systems (ABHS) is a cooperative living environment. Rules are necessary to protect and serve the rights and needs of the community as a whole. Some rules are for the protection of individual sobriety; others are to ensure good health and goodwill. The following rules are designed to ensure the health, safety and security of all our clients and staff. Individuals who disregard these guidelines are subject to disciplinary action and discharge.
WAC 388-805-300(17); 39-805-525(6)

Violation of Rules 1-13 will result in IMMEDIATE DISCHARGE.

  1. Chemical Use — including alcohol, illegal drugs, prescriptions drugs or any substance — with the intent to get intoxicated is prohibited. Any individual suspected of using or being under the influence will submit to either a breath or urine analysis.
  2. Violence and threats of violence will not be tolerated. This includes an act of violence, a threat to commit an act of violence, intimidation, verbal abuse or any action that may be considered as a threat.
  3. Absent Without Leave (AWOL). Any resident that is off ABHS premises without permission is considered AWOL. If you leave the premises for appointments or other business  you must go only to the location described on your pass and return to ABHS without stopping at any other location. If you stop at another location not on your pass, you will be considered AWOL.
  4. Theft. This is being in possession of any item that does not belong to you without the permission of the person who owns the item.
  5. Breach of Confidentiality. Breaches in confidentiality destroys a safe and trusting environment. (i.e. disclosing a group discussion outside the group, mentioning a client’s name on the phone, revealing the name or personal situation of any other client to individuals not in this program, etc.).
  6. Fraternization. Relationships beyond treatment necessity are not allowed regardless of gender. Fraternization is defined as dating, coupling, and isolating, soliciting, propositioning, intimate or sexual relationship, beyond friendships, which may develop. Those individuals participating and those aware of this situation will be subject to immediate discharge.
  7. Interaction. Even though there are gender specific separate communities at ABHS, interaction with the opposite sex is not authorized. Interaction will only be allowed when authorized by and conducted in the presence of an ABHS staff member. Talking, making comments or note passing is also considered interaction. If a client has a current or past relationship with any other client in treatment or with any staff member, that client must immediately disclose that relationship to clinical staff.
  8. Weapons. Possession of any weapon or manufacturing of an object which may be used as a weapon. All sharp manicuring or craft items to be turned in to the Care Team at intake.
  9. Reporting Rule Violations. If you are aware that another resident is violating ABHS rules, it is your responsibility to notify the staff of the situation. You should report it as soon as possible in confidence to a Care Team staff member, your counselor, or someone in administration. This can be done verbally or in written form.
  10. Encouraging or Creating Unrest or Dissent in the Community. Creating unrest or disturbing the serenity of the therapeutic environment at ABHS is not allowed. Intentionally creating unrest in the environment or intentionally disturbing the community will result in immediate discharge.
  11. Tattooing and Body Piercing. No tattoo or body piercing is allowed at ABHS. This means that neither can one receive or give either a tattoo or body piercing, nor can one give either to one’s self.
  12. Destruction of Property. Any willful destruction of property including breaking window screens, punching holes in the walls, defacing property with writing of any kind, breaking locks, breaking doors, or any other destruction of property. Tampering with any equipment utilized in the facility, including cameras, alarm panels, and ventilation.
  13. Smoking. Smoking is not permitted in the facility. Clients are to smoke in the designated area only and are monitored by staff. All smoking debris must be placed in appropriate receptacles.

Violation of Rules 14-48 will result in an EVALUATION for a BEHAVIORAL CHANGE AGREEMENT.

Any rule violation that does not result in immediate discharge may result in a behavioral change agreement. Three rules violations will result in a re-evaluation of your behavioral change agreement and may result in discharge. A fourth rule violation, after three rule violations of any kind, will result in discharge from treatment.

Personal Responsibility. Personal responsibility includes social, community, home, employment, financial, health, family, and any other responsibility determined beneficial. In order to provide training and support for the development of these characteristics, ABHS has developed personal expectations for all of our clients while they are in residence.

ABHS believes these responsibilities include: Personal Hygiene, Dress Code, House Jobs, Clean Living Area, and following ABHS Rules and Guidelines.

  1.  Personal Hygiene. All residents shall maintain good personal hygiene at all times, including daily showers. Showers are open from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. and from 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Clients may not take showers during required treatment activity times. Clients are expected to cover their mouth when coughing, use a tissue when sneezing, wash their hands, and wear socks and shoes. Male individuals may have beards if they are kept neat, trimmed and cleaned. Long hair is to be kept neat, clean and properly groomed. All personal hygiene articles containing alcohol must be surrendered upon admission and/or purchase. These include, but are not limited to, shaving lotion, cologne, perfume, mouthwash, and hair spray, and aerosol products. Hoarding supplies are not allowed.
  2. Dress Code. Residents must be fully dressed when outside of their dormitory. During Program Hours: Clean shirts, trousers, pants, and shoes and socks are to be worn at all times. No bedroom slippers, robes, pajama tops or bottoms, tank tops, bare midriff, underwear tops, or stretch or sagging pants are allowed outside dormitories. There will be no jewelry worn that is disruptive or offensive to treatment proceedings. Hats are not allowed in the building, including bandannas or hoods. Shirts with signs that encourage the use of alcohol/drugs are inappropriate, as are clothing articles with offensive language, violent, racist, or sexual connotation. After Program Hours: The same dress code as above with the exception of mid-thigh shorts.
  3. House Jobs. All residents will be assigned a household chore and participate in rotating work assignments as a part of their therapeutic treatment. You may be excused from assigned tasks only with the permission from administration. If excused, it is the resident’s responsibility to find a replacement for their chore.
  4. Unclean and/or Untidy Living Areas. Your living area needs to be kept clean and tidy at all times. Clients must be up and out of bed at 6 a.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. on weekends and holidays. Beds must be made and surrounding areas cleaned by 8 a.m. on weekdays and 8:30 a.m. on weekends and holidays. No food or pets may be kept in your living area. Items on floor must be picked up daily. Your room must be swept and bathroom cleaned daily. Your floor must be mopped weekly. Staff will inspect your room daily at 8 a.m. on weekdays and 8:30 a.m. on weekends. Residents will use room cleaning checklist.
  5. Laundry. Laundry schedules and procedures for the facility are posted and must be observed.
  6. Food and Beverages in Living Areas. Food and beverages are only allowed in the dining room. No food, beverages, candy, or vending machine items — except water — are allowed in lecture, group rooms or dorm rooms. No food from outside the facility can be brought in unless brought in by staff. Any food consumed by clients will be consumed in the dining room. Food ordered from restaurants may only be ordered and delivered by the restaurant.
  7. Bed Changes. Bed changes are not allowed without permission from the administrator. When a client enters treatment they will be assigned a specific dorm and bed where that client will reside during the entire treatment program unless a change is requested accompanied by doctor’s orders for a specific problem.
  8. Not Attending Treatment Activities. You will be expected to be on time and attend all treatment functions listed on your schedule, unless excused for outside appointments by clinical or other staff. You will be required to attend a self-help meeting each day of the week. Other meetings may be required as part of an individual’s treatment plan.
  9. Leaving Treatment Activities. Clients are not to leave treatment activities during scheduled time, whether run by clinical staff or outside speaker, for any reason other than an emergency. This includes lecture, group process, self-help, projections or reflections. In such emergency, client will be escorted by a shadow and report situation directly and promptly to staff. Clients will take care of bathroom breaks prior to scheduled treatment activity.
  10. Lying Down Without Permission. You are expected to be up and attending to your chores and program activities between 6 a.m. and 4:40 p.m. on weekdays. Lying down is only authorized by your primary counselor with a bed pass. On the weekends you are allowed to lay on top of your covers after your bed has been made. Your bed must be made by 8:30 a.m. You are responsible to attend all required programs. Residents may not lay on the floors.
  11. Not Completing Homework Assignments. A part of your treatment program is conducted through homework assignments. We will hold you accountable for any homework assignment given during treatment.
  12. Discourteous, Disrespectful, and Defiant Behavior. Derogatory comments about staff, clients, or the program are detrimental to the community. You are expected to be cooperative and to participate in treatment as directed.
  13. Profanity. Profanity is not acceptable behavior at ABHS and does not coincide with our goal to provide an atmosphere that is safe and friendly. Racial slurs, sexist, discriminatory remarks, and innuendos are considered profanity.
  14. Passes. Passes will only be written for treatment related activities  All passes must be filled out and signed by counselor and approved by clinical supervisor or administration. All passes must be completely and correctly filled out, including time of appointment, time leaving from the facility, time returning to facility, and address and phone number of destination. Clients must go directly to destination and return directly to ABHS without stopping at any other location.
  15. Signing In/Out. Upon entering or leaving the facility, all clients are required to sign in and out at the care team desk.
  16. Being in Unauthorized Areas. Clients at ABHS are only allowed in common areas or their own rooms. Clients are not permitted in any other areas of the facility without authorization from administrative or clinical staff. Lingering or loitering at staff work areas is not permitted.
  17. Curfew and Lights Out.  On weekdays, all residents are to be in their rooms for quiet time at 10 p.m. and in bed with the lights off at 11 p.m. On Friday, Saturday, and the evening before a holiday, quiet-time begins at 11 p.m. and lights out at 12 a.m.
  18. Excessive Noise. Excessive noise from individuals, televisions, radios, or stereos is disrespectful and will not be allowed. Televisions can be on for news programs before 8 a.m. Televisions can be on after 4:30 p.m. for treatment appropriate programs. Televisions must be off during self-help and reflections. Televisions and radios must be kept at a low volume. No personal televisions or radios will be permitted. Music videos are not permitted.
  19. Blackout and Restriction. Upon arrival, you will be allowed to make one telephone call within the first 24 hours for notification purposes. All clients at the facility are immediately placed on a 5-day blackout period. Blackout is defined as not leaving the facility for any reason except medical or legal appointment, no phone call or visitors. Your restriction may be extended at the discretion of clinical staff.
  20. Visitation. Visiting by family and friends of clients is on Saturdays for male clients and Sundays for female clients from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. No visitors are allowed to visit clients still on blackout. Each client is required to fill out a visitor’s list in advance and have it approved by their counselor. Visitation is only allowed in authorized areas separate from client living areas. All clients are limited to 7 visitors. All visitors are expected to comply with the rules and guidelines of ABHS.
  21. Phone Calls. Personal phone calls may be made on pay phones during scheduled telephone times. There is a 15 minute limit to all phone calls. Personal phone calls are allowed between 4:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. on weekdays (10:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights). Staff phones may be used for housing, school, or medical purposes with the permission of clinical or other staff. The use of profanity, yelling, or inappropriate conversations will terminate your phone call. Personal cell phones are not allowed.
  22. Pornography. Sexually tantalizing or explicit pictures, books, or materials are not allowed. Possession of pornography or items that could be perceived as sexually explicit or offensive to others will not be tolerated.
  23. Horseplay. Horeseplay, running, pushing, or shoving is not allowed. There will be no horseplay between clients, no running in hallways, no pushing or shoving, no throwing balls, Frisbees, or other objects or any other activity that will affect the health and safety of the community is not allowed.
  24. Lending, Borrowing, Exchanging. Buying or selling personal belongings of any kind is not allowed. Buying or selling of any item is prohibited.
  25. Gambling. Gambling in any form, for any reason, is not permitted.
  26. Doors. Room doors are to be kept open at all times, except when you are changing clothes. Group room doors are to remain open except during group process with counselor.
  27. Addition to Inventory. Any item acquired while you are in treatment must be added to your Inventory. This includes money, stamps and tobacco products, etc.
  28. Bulletin Boards. No material is permitted on the outside of bulletin boards. Any photos, papers, or cards must be posted within the board.
  29. Privately Owned Vehicles. Clients are not permitted to bring their own vehicles when they enter treatment. Vehicles are not to be parked anywhere in the vicinity of the facility unless approved prior by administration. Clients may not transport other clients to or from ABHS in a personal vehicle.
  30. Discharge from Treatment. A client who is discharged from treatment, whether completing, medical concerns, behaviorally, or aborting treatment, will be required to have their inventory pack out done by care team.
  31. Medication Line Conduct. While med line is in progress, clients are not to interrupt med line. In addition, talking in med or line cutting in med line is also not permitted.
  32. Health and Safety. Medications (over the counter and/or prescription) must be taken under observation of staff. At no time is it acceptable to “cheek” take any medication with you or to your room. Leaning back in your chair is prohibited. Chewing tobacco will not be allowed in the facility. Contraband: Any items smuggled into the facility are an extreme safety violation. Violation of the Health and Safety rules could result in immediate discharge.

American Behavioral Health Systems, Inc. reserves the right to modify, revise, or rewrite any or all the rules and guidelines at any time without notice.