Haunted House Allowed To Open At Site Of Former Institution
A judge allowed a haunted house located at the site of a former state institution for individuals with disabilities to open this weekend over objections from disability advocates and neighbors.
The attraction, which opened Friday at the site of the former Pennhurst State School and Hospital outside of Philadelphia, is being billed as the “Pennhurst Asylum.” The facility previously housed individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities for nearly 80 years before closing in 1987 after a lawsuit alleging neglect and abuse.
Disability advocacy groups including The Arc of the United States have staunchly opposed the facility being used as a haunted house, saying that doing so merely takes advantage of stereotypes and is disrespectful to those who lived there. The Arc recently called for a boycott, calling the Halloween attraction “truly horrifying.”
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But a legal effort to block the haunted house from opening was halted by a judge late last week. Area residents argued that an injunction should be put in place because they said the attraction did not have the proper permits. A judge disagreed, however, clearing the way for it to open over the weekend, reports the Philadelphia Inquirer. To read more click here.