Sununu Youth Services Center

New Hampshire’s Office of the Child Advocate is launching a review of some practices used by residential youth facilities in the state.

Child Advocate Moira O’Neill is taking a look at how both private centers and the state-run Sununu Youth Center use restraint and seclusion among children in care.

NHPR's Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley spoke with O'Neill about what she's hoping to understand through her review.


Dan Tuohy / NHPR

The New Hampshire Office of the Child Advocate is launching a review into how restraint and seclusion are being used on children in behavioral health settings.

The review will look at both private residential treatment facilities and the state-run Sununu Youth Services Center.

Two former employees of the Sununu Youth Services Center have been indicted on a combined 82 counts of aggravated sexual assault against a minor who was in custody there during the late 1990s.

The New Hampshire Attorney General's office says it is also opening a wider investigation into the treatment of minors at the facility from 1990 to 2000.

Sarah Gibson for NHPR


The Office of the Child Advocate says New Hampshire is making progress in reforming the foster and juvenile justice systems, but some say the state isn't moving fast enough.

At a juvenile justice forum on Friday at the statehouse, advocates touted a group of child welfare bills signed this month by Governor Sununu.

A group of New Hampshire lawmakers has issued their recommendations for repurposing the Sununu Youth Services Center (SYSC), the state’s juvenile detention facility in Manchester.

The committee convened in response to a juvenile justice bill passed this summer to address underutilization of the facility, which currently houses around 30 juveniles whom the court deems to be delinquent and violent.

Sarah Gibson for NHPR

New Hampshire is weeks away from having a 36-bed drug treatment center for youth.

The Youth Substance Use Disorder Treatment Center, or SUD, is in a renovated wing of the Sununu Youth Services Center, a youth detention center in Manchester. 

With cinder block walls and small bedrooms, the wing has retained an institutional look, but it is entirely separate from the secure detention center, with a separate entrance, parking lot, a space for yoga and meditation, and outdoor fields.

The state has chosen Granite Pathways to operate a new substance use disorder treatment facility for teenagers on the grounds of the Sununu Youth Services Center in Manchester.

The Executive Council approved a four-year contract with the group during its meeting on Wednesday, with services expected to begin in early November.

The 36-bed facility will be open to children ages 12-18 who are in need of inpatient treatment, making it the first residential program for minors in the state.

The Sununu Youth Services Center, a Manchester-based juvenile detention facility, will now provide services to teens struggling with substance use disorder. 

The Department of Health and Human Services says it will be a residential facility with 36 beds that will be run by a non-governmental organization. The center has undergone several changes within the past year after lawmakers passed legislation related to juvenile justice reform, and it's population has declined.

Construction is wrapping up on a new drug treatment facility at the John H. Sununu Youth Services Center in Manchester.

The 36-bed facility at the detention center will provide services to people ages 12 to 18 with substance use disorder.

NHPR File Photo


The director of operations at New Hampshire's youth detention center has resigned to take an out-of-state job.

Brady Serafin led the Sununu Youth Services Center for 2 ½ years. Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Jeffrey Meyers said Thursday that Serafin served the department with distinction. Serafin also was chief of the Bureau of Family, Community, and Program Supports in the Division for Children, Youth and Families.