MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - The MARC organization in Midland helps people with intellectual disabilities. But lately, they've been taking some heat as some of their residents have been reported lost or missing.
However, the organization wants to set the record straight.
Recently, we've covered a few reports of missing children who were under the care of MARC. However, MARC said that's not the case and it's more of a misunderstanding.
"In our homes, we primarily have adults that live in our residential homes but we do have some teenagers who live in our homes as well," said Midland MARC Marketing Director and Developing Director, Melanie Saiz. "There are some adults who have legal guardians, some that are their own guardian. Everything varies, it's a very diverse population."
And for the reported missing persons, MARC said it happens, in some cases more than others. But that doesn't mean that it will begin to restrain its individuals.
"That actually goes against our entire mission. What we were designed for is to create a place where our clients can live, work and play in the community and have as much possible freedom. We provide support and safety but these kinds of things just naturally happen, it truly does," said Saiz.
As for the clients who have gone missing, at least one parent said he fully trusts MARC with her son.
Rosa Marquez, mother of Ivan James, who was recently reported missing for a period of time, said in a statement that, "MARC has been awesome and has taken great care of my son" and that, "he has become more expressive and is beginning to communicate better."
MARC also said that their clients are not meant to be supervised at all times, as each person has a different set of needs.
As for the reports that MARC is being investigated, they said it is the companies' responsibility to report any incident and that MARC is happy to do so and is typically doing it before the required time given.