After the shooting with Arnaldo and Charles and the North Miami police, after everything else Arnaldo had been through, his mom Gladys decided to get a lawyer. A disability law specialist, Matthew Dietz. I’ve just gotten to his building in Miami, he’s just told me about the new “Arnaldo crisis,” takes me back to his desk.
Matthew Dietz: I get this phone call from Gladys. And she went to visit Arnaldo, and he actually had his head shaved because he cut his own hair with a razor.
I talked with Gladys about this later.
Gladys Soto: They say, "Oh, I'm sorry, Arnaldo cut completely the hair." But I said, ‘What happened with the one-to-one? They has a lot — he has a lot time to cut the hair.’
Audrey Quinn: So the one-to-one is his assistant who's always supposed to be with him.
GS: I don't know. I don't know. I don't know.
MD: It’s difficult to understand how a person that has a one-on-one aide is able to cut their hair with a razor.
He hadn’t used clippers or a trimmer. But a real shaving razor, like a Bic.
It was difficult to understand how that occurred.
Carlton Palms is the remote facility outside Orlando where Arnaldo now lives. A place well-documented for abuse, even client deaths…and, a state order to shut it down. I’m gonna say up front Carlton Palms would not talk to us for this story. We tried the managers, their publicity guy, their parent company—Bellwether Behavioral Health, Bellwether’s lawyers.
But I checked in with Gladys later about what happened, shaving his head with a razor was something Arnaldo would do with her when he wanted to, she’d watch just to make sure he was safe. The issue is Carlton Palms is getting the state’s money to provide Arnaldo with round-the-clock care. Over two-hundred and twenty thousand dollars a year for his services. That’s equivalent to the salary of eleven one-on-one aides. If this is a place that can take that kind of money and then fail to provide him with a single one-on-one aide, long enough for him to find a razor and shave his head, it makes Matt and Gladys wonder what else they might be neglecting.
MD: And then there was some blood on clothes and Arnaldo showed Gladys his skinned elbow. And she doesn’t know how it happened, and of course all of the people that were working with Arnaldo for the day had no idea what happened and and his usual aides were out.
He’d apparently hurt himself, and she didn’t know how, didn’t know why. And nobody could tell her. These people she’s depending on, who are getting hundreds of thousands for round-the-clock care, didn’t even seem to know what he’d been up to.
Carlton Palms is a place specifically designated for people with “severe or moderate maladaptive behaviors” — people known to do things that put themselves or others at risk. But Matt and Gladys had to ask, did that responsibility mean anything to Carlton Palms? Could this place really be trusted?
You’re listening to Aftereffect. I’m Audrey Quinn.
In the last episode, I came to North Miami to learn about the role of the police in Arnaldo’s life. I’d ended at the family's lawyer’s office, and right away, this new question came up. What is going on with Arnaldo at Carlton Palms? Is he safe? How do we even find out?
His lawyer started to fill me in. Matt Dietz is in his late forties, with thinning grey hair, bushy eyebrows that shadow deepset crinkly eyes. Along with the law practice he helps run a disability legal advocacy group.
MD: I grew up with a horrible stutter which, I’m not stuttering now which is different. And there wasn’t anybody when I started — there wasn’t anybody representing people with disabilities.
Matt has this way of talking about his cases where he’s just like, All we’re asking for here is so basic. Like he can’t imagine a world where these accommodations aren’t reasonable. And looking around his office, I’m pretty sure he didn’t get into this for the money.
Gladys called Matt just a couple days after the shooting in July 2016. And even with Arnaldo, Matt’s first priority was figuring out his housing, before he got a case started. He went to see Arnaldo in his hospital room.
MD: I was introduced as — as a friend. And he was upset being there. He’d say, “Mom, be careful. Mom, I love you.” He would say, “Don’t shoot, don’t shoot. Don’t shoot.”
The difficulties you have when you’re dealing with PTSD with a person who is non-verbal, it’s something that it’s hard to wrap your head around. How do you treat a person for trauma who can’t express the trauma that they’ve experienced?
The hope here was to get Arnaldo back home eventually, with in-home help. But given Arnaldo’s behavioral needs right after the incident, how shook up he was, Matt felt like Arnaldo needed to be somewhere fully staffed. Somewhere guaranteed to get Arnaldo off the police-and-hospitals track. Because that last stay at Aventura hospital after the shooting, for over month, all the drugs Arnaldo was on, the limited visiting hours for Gladys and Miriam, it was pretty rough.
MD: I got the bills afterwards. The hospital charged about $100,000. $44,000 of that was on meds.
$44,000 dollars of medications in 35 days.
MD: Because basically what they probably did is they probably kept him as as sedated as possible in the facility. Cause — it’s a psychiatric facility, they don’t have behavioral health there.
They even had him — one, two occasions go through group therapy. But again, he’s a nonverbal autistic man.
AQ: Group therapy is like — people sitting in a circle in chairs.
MD: Yes. Yes. Every time that I went there and for about two weeks, Aventura Hospital pleaded with me on a daily basis to get him out. There wasn’t anything that they could do for him there. That he had to be transferred to an intensive behavioral facility like Carlton Palms.
AQ: What did that feel like when you realized that the the only viable option for him was to go to Carlton Palms?
MD: I felt that — I thought about why there weren’t more intensive behavioral facilities in the entire South Florida. And how absolutely wrong that is.
Once Arnaldo got into Carlton Palms, Matt started on his case. What he’s brought is a civil rights lawsuit on Arnaldo’s behalf. Against the City of North Miami, Jonathan Aledda (the officer who shot), the three other North Miami officers who circled Arnaldo and Charles that day, and Arnaldo’s interrogator, detective Michael Gaudio.
MD: They never had training involving people with autism and they knew about the fact that they were there and they still had a pattern of taking them to psych hospitals.
This is probably the biggest deal about Arnaldo’s case. It was total news to me. I’d been talking to people about the Baker Act for weeks. About how involuntary psych ward commitment gets used on developmentally disabled people once every six hours in Florida, I thought it was just an ugly reality.
But Matt told me everything about that is illegal. The Baker Act is only supposed to be used on people who specifically appear to be mentally ill. Specifically NOT developmentally disabled.
It’s not that involuntary commitment by cops is great for anybody, but if you’re simply showing symptoms of your developmental disability, like Arnaldo having a meltdown, it’s against the law for them to Baker Act you. And Matt’s saying it’s on the cops to know the difference.
Also mentioned in the case, is of course that other thing —
AQ: Do you think if Arnaldo and Charles had been white men, this might have gone differently?
MD: Yes. The fact that Charles Kinsey was a black man, wearing street clothes with with a Hispanic man in front of him carrying a truck, may have led to the fact that the police were called and thought that it may be a weapon. But once they got to the scene, it should have been absolutely 100 percent clear that this was not that situation. Maybe the fact that Charles was lying on his back with his arms in the air saying, “Don’t shoot, don’t shoot.” may have been a clue.
Again, the North Miami Police Department won’t comment.
MD: It is the biggest nightmare to both Miriam and Gladys that you could imagine. Cause she doesn’t want him at a group home. She wanted him home from the inception and if she had been given the services that she needed when he was 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 — he wouldn’t have even been in a group home.
AQ: Whose fault is it that he couldn’t do that then?
MD: Um — the — in my opinion, which of course everything is my opinion. From childhood, he should have started receiving the services that he needs in order to understand and deal with any behaviors that he would have. And be given adequate home health care services in the beginning. And then we wouldn’t be in this situation we are now.
It was hard enough for Arnaldo’s mom Gladys just to get Arnaldo services period when he was young. And this is true for black and hispanic autistic kids across the country — they’re less likely to get diagnosed, less likely to get services than white kids. But Matt says what Arnaldo also needed was a plan for adulthood, a plan for when he went over The Cliff and aged out of school services.
MD: Especially somebody who has such needs that Arnaldo does, the same way that a person plans a yearly IEP with school. What benchmarks do you wanna meet? What services that are out there? What are the community resources?
He says until there’s a system to address those kinds of questions in childhood, for all autistic people, people will keep having issues like Arnaldo’s had.
When it comes to Carlton Palms, Matt tried to be optimistic. It was a place under watch, he thought. Bad history aside, these people can’t afford to mess up again. At least he hoped.
And in the meantime, he brought on a trauma specialist to work with Arnaldo. Nikki Keefer.
Nikki Keefer: I can hear you perfectly.
AQ: Okay, great. So yes. The reason I wanted to I wanted to jump on the line is that I wanted to kind of get a baseline of how, how your impression is of how Arnaldo is doing right now.
Nikki runs an autism therapy company out of Orlando, she took Arnaldo’s case pro bono. Matt gave me her number, she says she met Arnaldo after he was already at Carlton Palms.
NK: My assistant and I showed up and we were looking for him. And, we couldn't, we couldn't find him.
She’d later learn he was sleeping, on the floor of a classroom.
NK: And so we were just kind of walking around and — I found his behavior plan, from them. I just found it. A behavior plan is a treatment plan. And it's what you're supposed to do to prevent behavior from happening, what you're supposed to do if they do happen.
AQ: What's the behavior plan say?
NK: It says, “Aggression, property destruction. Elopements,” which is running away. “Tantrums and agitation.”
AQ: And and that's what Carlton Palms said about him?
AQ: What are they doing with Arnaldo now?
NK: I don't know. I don't know if they're doing anything with Arnaldo. That's my issue. Arnaldo needs to be worked with. He needs to be taught. He needs to be learning. That's what we are paid to do.
This behavior plan definitely cited Arnaldo’s “bad” behaviors. But it didn’t do what it was actually supposed to, lay out a plan for preventing them. But what Nikki did find, was the cost plan…how Carlton Palms is telling the state of Florida about just how bad Arnaldo is…detailing as many incidents as they can…more than Nikki could see any evidence for…and, asking for more money. More than the $220,000 a year they’re already getting for his care.
Remember how that profit motive works? More problems in your clients, more money for you.
NK: The better at falsifying data you are, the more it buttresses your argument for those people that decide whether or not you get the big dollars.
Nikki also found Arnaldo’s medication list. He was on two sedatives, three anti-psychotics, an antidepressant, two anti-seizure medications, and seven other medications for other medical issues.
But any kind of education programming, helping Arnaldo find ways to communicate besides aggression, she didn’t see that happening.
NK: He's missing out on those opportunities because people are afraid of him.
What she also saw, was some footage from a surveillance camera.
NK: They allowed me to watch video of some restraint procedures with him that were all on the overnight shift and it wasn't so much that he — I saw no physical aggression. They were the result of him being agitated in his room. And him coming out of his room and them asking him to go to the mat.
The mat. She’s referring to a wrap mat, it’s basically a piece of foam covered in velcro straps, to hold people down, immobilize them.
NK: And they, they restrained him on the mat.
AQ: Wait, just just because he came out of his room?
NK: And was making noise in his room.
Not doing anything violent, from what she could tell. There wasn’t any sound on the video, so she couldn’t hear what was being said. But she could see it.
NK: And then they would, four or five people would put him down and hold him down.
AQ: Four or five people?
NK: Yes. They described in their notes on reactive strategies that one hold was ten people which I thought was really outlandish until they explained to me they count, in their hold, people rotating in and out off of his legs and on. What kind of a restraint procedure needs ten people? How is that humanly possible?
Nikki’s thought — To keep him under control, Arnaldo is given medication. That makes him sleep during the day, which means he's often awake at night. He’s not allowed to have a tv, not allowed a computer. There’s nothing to do in his room. But if he makes noise or leaves his room, a team of people hold him down and restrain his whole body so that he can't move.
Nikki was brought on to help Arnaldo address his trauma. But while he’s at Carlton Palms, she says, she can’t even start that. Instead she’s putting his therapy considerations aside, and just trying to get him out of there.
She says it seems his instances of aggression are increasing. And instead of figuring out ways to help him calm down, they’re just leaving him to do whatever he wants during the day. Which might sound like a good thing, but he’s not getting activities either, so he’s spending his time sleeping on the floor when they’re getting money to teach him.
NK: I just think for all parties concerned, it's probably best that he is placed somewhere else that is better able to meet his needs.
Matt Dietz’s logic, that this place under watch could be trusted, no longer felt like a reasonable hope. So now Nikki’s trying to figure out another place for Arnaldo, outside Carlton Palms. And I’m meeting up with Miriam and Gladys, heading straight there to see if Arnaldo’s okay. That’s next, when Aftereffect continues.
Years ago, when Arnaldo first started having all the trouble in group homes, Gladys and Miriam’s friend Daisy Ravelo had told them about Carlton Palms. They heard about the beautiful campus, heard how people didn’t get Baker Acted there, didn’t have cops come and commit them to a hospital.
They hadn’t heard about the troubled history. The abuse, the neglect, the deaths.
Miriam explained it to me when I was back at their house a couple days after seeing their lawyer Matt.
Miriam Rios Soto: We — we wanted Arnaldo to stay in Carlton Palms. We still — that's the Achilles — how do you say that? The Achilles Heel of ours, to give people the benefit of the doubt. Okay, things might change. Okay, maybe this place has potential. Okay. Right? But there's still something shady — or maybe not shady — but something that we are not comfortable with and we cannot quite pinpoint, which doesn't make us feel safe. It's like an intuition that there's something odd.
AQ: When did you start to get that feeling about Carlton Palms?
MRS: Months ago. Months ago.
AQ: What do you think it was? Like, what —
MRS: I don't know. It's just that Arnaldo's expression was not the same. Arnaldo's...the way he would interact with us was not the same anymore.
Gladys Soto: He's afraid. He's afraid. And...he...he's said, “Mom, please,” in my ear. Like a secret. “Mother, please, I want to go home. I want to go home.”
AQ: He actually said the words?
When we get to Carlton Palms, things at first actually seem better. Arnaldo’s excited to see us, cues up his music on the radio.
GS: Did you want more? Do you want more?
Arnaldo Rios Soto: Want more?
GS: Want more?
MRS: 'Naldo you like it?
ARS: Yes, ma’am.
We’re back in the small chapel where they spend their visits with Arnaldo. Back at the folding table at the side of the room with more of Gladys’s tupperwares of home cooking.
Arnaldo’s shaved head has grown in to a short buzz cut. It looks good actually, suits him.
He’s wearing new sneakers and jeans, his favorite zip-up grey sweatshirt, playing YouTube DJ again with Miriam’s phone.
MRS: You need to eat?
GS: I don’t finish with Arnaldo.
MRS: Okay. She eats after Arnaldo eats.
ARS: [whispered] Let’s go guys….
Arnaldo’s whispering conspiratorially at the screen, repeating lines from Transformers. He leans into it so it’s just a couple inches from his face.
He’s way more animated today. He seems happy. When I met him before, his eyes looked glazed over, he’d been more out of it. He seemed maybe drugged up.
MRS: Show her!
AQ: Yeah I see, I see her. I see.
He’s pointing on the cellphone screen to the Brattina character in Pound Puppies, the 1980’s version. It’s another favorite video, Arnaldo’s got some specific tastes.
ARS: Come here, guys!!!
GS: Okay okay okay. I’m coming, I’m coming! Show me. Ohhh wow! Beautiful, I love it! I love it, Patina. You have it. Where is Patina — look at that.
GS: Patina, yes.
Video: This is our time — we had it all.
I watch as he takes some of the laminated papers out of his tote bag on the table. I see on one page in black sharpie he’s written the name of his toy truck, I recognize it as the one he was carrying the day Charles was shot. Celulares telefonica.
AQ: Arnaldo, you wrote in there “Celulares.”
ARS: [I’m sorry ma’am]
MRS: Celulares Telefonica?
GS: Celulares tu quiere?
MRS: He said, “I’m sorry, ma’am.” Because he feels like you’re — correcting him or something.
AQ: Oh man, I’m sorry, Arnaldo. That’s not what I meant. That’s not what I meant at all. How can I like —
MRS: Interview him?
AQ: No no no. How can I, like, make sure understands my intent better?
MRS: No, you can’t. You can’t.
I found this really hard to process. That my words could only get me so far with Arnaldo. I couldn’t decide whether it was more rude to keep talking to him in my normal way when that’s not the way he communicates, or to not try to talk to him. That felt rude too.
You just can’t. It’s it’s like a way of approaching him — you don’t ask him — you know how we have a conversation like — how are you doing today? Can you — can you explain to me in details what you did today? Then I can actually explain to you in detail, ‘Well, I woke up then I took a shower and then I brushed my teeth.’ Like that, right? With him it’s different. With him it’s like — “Do you want this? Is this okay? It’s okay.” It’s always reassuring and short —
ARS: Let’s go guys! Not doing this to!
Arnaldo interrupts with another movie quote.
MRS: Arnaldo — Beauty and the Beast?
ARS: Beauty and the Beast?
Video: And now, feature presentation.
Arnaldo’s pulled up a YouTube clip of the Disney opening credits on the phone. He clicks to stop the video. Pulls the playhead back and starts it again.
He’s pausing and looping the Beauty and the Beast scene again and again.
And maybe it’s the repeating tape, maybe it’s just the eeriness of the chapel, but time seems to stand still while we’re in there.
Video: Well, where is she? ... Oh, well actually, she’s in the process of uh — circumstances. Yes — is she — well. Where is she?
I notice Miriam and Gladys’s mood changes, the initial excitement of seeing Arnaldo wears off, and then they’re just a mother and a daughter who woke up early to make a long drive, to see their family member during regulated visiting hours. Miriam tries to rest in one of the chapel pews. She’ll have braided her long hair into four different hairstyles by the end of the afternoon, expertly applied a full face of makeup, the way she covers everything up when she feels like she needs to. Gladys gently pulls up each of Arnaldo’s sleeves, applies lotion to his elbows. Then starts sweeping. Mutters under her breath, “It’s like a jail.”
Only Arnaldo stays animated, still rewatching the same Beauty and the Beast scene.
MRS: Sometimes he doesn’t know how to express himself, so what he says is the dialogue of the scene that he remembered.
AQ: What, what part of the scene does he say?
MRS: “If she doesn’t eat with me, then she doesn’t eat at all. Then go ahead and starve!”
AQ: He says that.
MRS: That part. So — if he yells at you like that, that’s because he’s really upset with you. He would yell that at me.
It’s one of the few times Miriam will talk directly about Arnaldo lashing out at her. More an explanation than a complaint.
MRS: And I knew okay he’s not — he doesn’t wanna even see me so I’m gonna stay in my room. He grabs pieces of the cartoons that he remembers or the — or the Disney movies that he remembers and he uses different dialogues to express how he feels according to what he remembers visually.
AQ: Cause he knows —
MRS: So he’s — this expression of frowning from the Beast. This expression of happiness from from Belle. The expression of worry from the little clock from Beauty and the Beast. He’s always worried so when he’s worried he does the expressions of the clock.
AQ: That’s so cool. To me that he is like, “Hey this isn’t — like these kind of words don’t come naturally to me, but here’s an example of other people using them. I’m gonna model their example.”
MRS: “I’m gonna model that so you can know what I feel right now.” But what he doesn’t know is that a lot of people don’t understand that.
Gladys walks over to Arnaldo, gives him a kiss.
GS: Awww - awwww. Te como te como te como.
Video: [singing] This is our time we have it all...
Gladys stands up next to the folding table, shakes her hips like she’s salsa dancing. Arnaldo gets up next to her. Does a little shoulder shimmy in rhythm. Just a few beats. And then he’s back to the videos.
Miriam stays seated. And I can see she’s wavering, in this moment they look so happy. In some ways Arnaldo seems improved. But there’s just so much she can’t know about Carlton Palms.
MRS: The staff here did a — from from what I understand they did a really good job trying to bring Arnaldo back from that state of being confined away or or being — having — you know the defenses up.
I don’t want want to worry her, but I’m having trouble keeping track of how she feels about the place, and knowing what Nikki Keefer’s seen here. Miriam’s also told me she and her mom are prohibited from entering Arnaldo’s bedroom, from checking up on his living arrangement — a limit I’ll later learn violates state policy.
AQ: Last time I was here he had some marks on his chin?
MRS: That’s true.
AQ: From the helmet. Like do you worry about that still?
MRS: We really do worry about that. We really do worry about that. Especially when I heard a comment from one of the staff saying, “No, we give him the mask. And he wears it.”
AQ: Wait, a mask?
AQ: What’s that?
MRS: Well, from when they do — interventions.
GS: Of restraint.
MRS: Of restraint. They give him the mask
MRS: Apparently and allegedly they give him the mask so he can wear it himself. So he wouldn’t bite anybody.
AQ: What does the mask look like?
MRS: I don’t even wanna know.
AQ: He just turned up the music.
MRS: Yeah he doesn’t wanna talk about that. He’s listening to what we’re saying — he listens to what we’re saying. So to ignore us, he tries to raise the volume of things. But it’s really things like that that we cannot know about and if we ask nobody will tell us. That makes us not want him to be here anymore. I’m not saying the staff is bad but there’s shady things going on and not all the staff are the same.
After four hours in the chapel, it’s time to head out. When we emerge the sky is grey like after a storm. Arnaldo’s regular one-on-one is outside the main hall to meet us, Gladys gives Arnaldo a long hug before handing him off.
GS: Love you, papi. Papi, bye!
I notice another family saying goodbye, a mom and a dad also visiting with their twenty-something son. He’s got close-cropped hair like Arnaldo’s, they’re beaming at him. We head towards the car.
GS: That is Arnaldo’s, that is Arnaldo’s room.
That is Arnaldo’s room, she says. She points to a window on the lower floor of a brown dorm building.
GS: You can, you can see inside.
Inside, where she can’t go.
GS: They tell me every day, “Is okay.”
She says they tell her every day that he’s okay.
GS: I, I need to believe.
Man: Have a good night.
GS: You too, bye.
A week later, I checked in with Arnaldo’s sister Miriam.
AQ: Ok, just a second. I'm gonna transfer you over, hold on. Alright, do I still have you?
MRS: Yes, I’m here.
AQ: OK great.
I’d been calling Miriam every week or two, catching up with her on her on her drive home from work.
AQ: How are you doing? I heard from someone that your mom is sick.
MRS: Yeah, my mom is, is not well. But she didn’t go to the hospital at all because she doesn’t have health care and we cannot afford it, I cannot afford it. She thinks she can ride the pain out and stuff and — but it’s in the pancreas so I don’t know what’s going on. I told her that if it gets worse then whether she likes it or not, we’ll have to go to the hospital or something.
Her pancreas has never really recovered from that bad dengue fever she got twenty years ago after the trip to Baltimore.
AQ: That’s really scary.
MRS: Yeah, it is scary, but, yeah. But we’re rolling with the punches.
AQ: I’m really sorry to hear that, Miriam.
MRS: Ah, yeah. Thank you. I appreciate the sympathy.
AQ: Any updates on stuff with Arnaldo? Do — were you able to go see him on Sunday?
MRS: Yeah, you know how we used to spend time in the chapel? Well the chapel is closed now, they don’t allow anybody there.
AQ: That’s like your special place.
Carlton Palms won’t let them meet with Arnaldo in the chapel anymore, because there’s no windows for people to see in. She says they say it’s for her and her mom’s safety.
MRS: And that adds to the stress and the worries and I think it’s one of the factors that my mother’s health keeps deteriorating. I don’t even know what I’m telling you it’s just that — I’m just so worried, worried all the time about where is he going to go? What are we going to do next? And it’s like, it’s also taking a toll on me emotionally. Because I just want both of them to be happy. And, you know, the pressure —
MRS: That worry just, you know.
MRS: And then she thinks, she thinks of me too. She thinks of my brother, like, if I’m in the hospital and I have to stay, will I miss the weekend and not see him? ‘Cause I can’t see him any other time, and I want the weekend to see him. If I stay in the hospital and it’s already gonna be Friday, then Saturday and Sunday I’m not going to be able to see him? So, I know her, I know her for a fact that she’s — all the decisions she’s making is because of me and my brother. I know it. Oh my god, I’m so sorry, I’m venting —
MRS: Like crazy.
MRS: I got home and —
MRS: I’m gonna touch up my makeup a little bit and dry up my tears (laughs). I don’t want her. I’m laughing now. Because I don’t want her to, to see that I’m freaking out (laughs) because I am. I’m totally freaking out (breaks down) because if something happens to her, I’m going to feel so alone.
I’m torn. The prospect of Arnaldo moving out of Carlton Palms is just one more stressor on this family. And he did seem happy there, the last time I saw him.
But I know genuinely terrible things have happened at Carlton Palms…and some of what I’ve seen and learned about Arnaldo and other clients there…seems really not great.
Woman: It was like a belt that was tied around his waist — and it had — like chain links that were attached to cuffs that went around his wrist. He could still move his arms but his hands would not be able to reach his mouth.
On the next episode of Aftereffect — I gotta figure this out. What happens behind Carlton Palms closed doors...in the places Miriam and Gladys can’t go? Who’s ultimately responsible here? There’s a lot that’s not adding up.
Aftereffect by Only Human is a podcast from WNYC Studios.
Aftereffect is reported by me, Audrey Quinn, and edited by Ben Adair. Additional reporting from Aneri Pattani. Production help from Phoebe Wang.
Cayce Means is our technical director with engineering help from Matt Boynton and Jared Paul.
Hannis Brown is our composer.
Our team of talented reporter-producers includes Christopher Johnson, Mary Harris, Amanda Aronczyk, and Christopher Werth. With help from Margot Slade.
Michelle Harris is our fact checker. Our interns are Kaitlin Sullivan and Nicolle Galteland.
Jim Schachter is WNYC’s Vice President for News.
Support for WNYC’s health coverage is provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, and Science Sandbox, an initiative of the Simons Foundation.
Thanks also to the Rosalynn Carter Fellowship for Mental Health Journalism.