Ontario Father Says Scientology Destroyed His Family; "We Didn't Know What Was Going On" - 2017-08-15
Phil Jones hasn't spoken to his son or daughter in four years. The Ajax native now lives in Nevada to be closer to his children, who live in California—even though they refuse to have a relationship with him. That's because Jones—once a devoted parishioner at the Church of Scientology in Toronto—decided to leave the Church and speak out against its policies and abuses.
"The thing is, if they were to get in contact with us—because we are what's called 'declared suppressive persons' because we left and criticized—then they would be declared and lose friends, family, spouses. They would lose everything that they have. So that's the threat that Scientology holds over their head," said Jones.
The Church of Scientology is the brainchild of science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard, who started the religion in the 1950s. The organization grew into an international network of chapters all around the world, including Toronto, which became extremely wealthy, and is no stranger to controversy. Followers pay to study "courses" and attend "auditing sessions," which are described as similar to counselling. Over his "Scientology career," Jones estimated that he spent around $150,000 on courses and services.