• Gwinnett residents not happy with drug rehab center in neighborhood


    LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. - Some Lawrenceville residents said a residential drug rehab center is a potential threat to their neighborhood and their property values.

    The program treats young men suffering from drug and alcohol addiction.

    The rehab facility is just outside a subdivision on Cruse Road.

    Neighbors who live there told Channel 2's Kerry Kavanaugh it's just a little too close to home for them.

    It has been around since February, and there haven't been any problems, but people in the neighborhood said they want to keep it that way.

    "As a taxpayer, I feel my voice should be heard," resident Roy James said.

    Residents of the Glen Oaks Racket Club subdivision are speaking out. The rehab center property is known as Purple Inc. It moved into the neighborhood earlier this year.

    "I felt blindsided in exactly what type of facility it was," resident Ruthie Cansiz said.

    Neighbors contacted Channel 2 Action News after receiving a letter from the county. It was a notice that Purple Inc. had applied for a permit to continue operating a residential facility.

    "Across from a subdivision with a bunch of children and across from a highschool, that didn't seem like an appropriate location," resident Linda Chambers said.

    "The people who are here are not dangerous people," said Brett Bagley, director of Purple Inc.

    Kavanaugh visited the facility Tuesday. Bagley told her the rehab center has been operating in Gwinnett County for 10 years.

    He said many of the 25 young men currently staying at the center come from the Gwinnett area and all come voluntarily.

    "These are guys are the guys who are here because they want to get better. They're being drug tested. They're here with clinicians actively participating in changing their lives," Bagley said.

    Bagley said his residents have never placed anyone in danger. But homeowners in the area said they don't want to be the first.

    "I think if any person falls out of this sort of rehab program and causes a problem for one child, one person, one house, that is enough," Cansiz said.

    Bagley said in order to educate the community, he held an open house and invited residents, but only one person showed up.

    The county planning commission is expected to make a recommendation Tuesday night on whether the rehab center can continue operating as a residential facility.

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