Neighbors not happy about Clovis mental health treatment center

CLOVIS, Calif. (KFSN) -- A sober living facility in the City of Clovis will soon transition to a mental health treatment center, and neighbors are not happy.

On Tuesday night residents in the Deauville neighborhood are hoping to put a stop to what they feel will impact their safety, while the facility owner hopes to fight what he feels is the stigma fueling the fire.

Tim Garver has lived in the Deauville neighborhood for 16 years.

The quaint suburb in Clovis recently became home to a Women's sober living facility that will soon transition to a mental health treatment center.

It is a change that Garver and fellow neighbors wish they would have been notified about.

"I think the city of Clovis needs to be aware of this type of situation from a legality point they can place the home anywhere no problem in that. A lot of people just feel uncomfortable now."

Deauville Neighbors have organized and voiced their concerns ranging from parking and property values to their safety.

"What we are saying is, if you're going to do that can you find a place that's not in a high-density population with a lot of women and children in the area," said Garver.

Sierra Meadows Behavioral Health CEO Dr. Matthew Tatum says he hopes to combat the stigma he feels is the driving force behind the opposition.

"People have some misguided understanding of what mental health is, and what mental health treatment is, and that brings a lot of fear with it."

The clinical psychologist lives just down the street, with his family.

He says six patients will live at the center, which will be staffed 24 hours a day.

These will be patients struggling with depression, anxiety or mood disorders.

Depending on the State licensing process, the facility could transition as soon as December, and Dr. Tatum hopes neighbors will get on board.

"I would encourage them to put down their pre-conceived notions about what mental health looks like and to really seek to understand people suffering."

Deauville neighbors support Dr. Tatum's effort but say their neighborhood is not the appropriate place for it.

Wednesday night at 6 pm, the City of Clovis will address the concern and their jurisdictional issues.
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