THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
First posted: Thursday, September 29, 2016 09:28 AM EDT
BUENA PARK, Calif. — A Halloween attraction at two California amusement parks has been closed amid accusations that it was offensive to the mentally ill.
KABC-TV reports the virtual reality attraction at Knott’s Berry Farm and California Great America was originally called FearVR: 5150. The 5150 refers to California’s state code for an involuntary psychiatric hold. The story line of the attraction focused on a patient in a hospital.
Among those criticizing the ride was pastor Rick Warren, who said it “stereotyped & stigmatized” mental illness. KTVU-TV reports National Alliance on Mental Illness-San Francisco Executive Director Anne Fischer called the attraction “incredibly damaging” for reinforcing a stereotype.
Park owner Cedar Fair says the attraction wasn’t meant to offend and has been pulled from its California parks and one in Canada.
Parks close Halloween ride amid charges of stereotyping | World | News | Toronto