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Maine Democrats: Gov Not Doing Enough to Fix Riverview

A.J. Higgins

Maine Democratic leaders are lashing out at Republican Gov. Paul LePage, who they said should be making ongoing issues at the Riverview Psychiatric Center a top priority.

The Democrat's State House press conference followed a recent report by the Maine Sunday Telegram on the dangerous conditions and dysfunction at the hospital, and a decision by a legislative government watchdog group to investigate the facility.

Maine Senate Majority Leader Troy Jackson said the governor was ducking the Riverview issue.

"Where is the governor?" Jackson said. "We hear nothing on this issue. For someone who likes to talk a lot about things, we don't hear anything on this issue. So for me it really is something that I'm concerned about because I wouldn't really want to be a worker put in that type of a position. I certainly wouldn't want to be a patient put in that type of position."

Riverview Psychiatric Center Superintendent Jay Harper issued a statement in response to the Democrats' press conference, saying the events in question in the newspaper took place nearly a year ago. He said he was confident that the many changes in both staff and the direction at Riverview have led to improved safety for staff and patients.