The US Department of Education (ED) published Restraint and Seclusion: Resource Document today. After the extensive discussions the last few years about abuses of management procedures (see , especially those used with children and youths with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, ED contracted with an agency to create this document that provides guidelines for the appropriate use of restraints and seclusion.
The foundation of any discussion about the use of restraint and seclusion is that every effort should be made to structure environments and provide supports so that restraint and seclusion are unnecessary. As many reports have documented, the use of restraint and seclusion can, in some cases, have very serious consequences, including, most tragically, death. There is no evidence that using restraint or seclusion is effective in reducing the occurrence of the problem behaviors that frequently precipitate the use of such techniques.
Continue reading ‘US ED resource on restraint and seclusion’
Based on the work of a task force composed of highly qualified individuals, the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) has issued position statement about the use of restraint and seclusion in treatment. Members of the task force, which was appointed by the executive board, include Jon S. Bailey, Michael F. Dorsey, Louis P. Hagopian, Gregory P. Hanley, David B. Lennox, Mary M. Riordan, Scott Spreat, and Timothy R. Vollmer (chair).
The Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) and its members strongly oppose the inappropriate and/or unnecessary use of seclusion, restraint, or other intrusive interventions. Although many persons with severe behavior problems can be effectively treated without the use of any restrictive interventions, restraint may be necessary on some rare occasions with meticulous clinical oversight and controls. In addition, a carefully planned and monitored use of timeout from reinforcement can be acceptable under restricted circumstances. Seclusion is sometimes necessary or needed, but behavior analysts would support only the most highly monitored and ethical practices associated with such use, to be detailed below.
In the “below,” the document goes on to present in detail the a set of guiding principles and specific recommendations about the use of seclusion and restraint. Read the statement, “ABAI Statement on Restraint and Seculsion” from the ABAI Website.
As the US House of Representatives prepares to make statements about and amend HR 4247, Representative Joe Courtney (CN, US) posted a statement on the blog maintained by the House committee that will debate the legislation. The post, “Rep. Joe Courtney: Congress Must Make Schools Safe Havens for Children,” touts Representative Courtney’s perspective on the legislation. There’s lots more about the proposed legislation via that blog and related resources. Take a look.
Also, read the actual proposed legislation, “Preventing Harmful Restraint and Seclusion in Schools Act” and the position statements by the Council for Children with Behavior Disorders about seclusion and restraint and “Position Summary on Restraint and Seclusion.”
The US Congress is considering legislation to prevent abusive restraint and seclusion of students in schools. This is a welcome consequence of the highly visible reports about terrible abuses of students’ right to be free from harm. However, as much as I support this initiative, it is important to make clear that the laws (and regulations resulting from them) must be crafted carefully.
Here’s some text from the press efforts by the US House of Representatives about this important legislation. I follow it with a cautious support of the law.
Continue reading ‘US legislators consider law for preventing abusive restraint and seclusion’
Parade Magazine, the insert into millions of Sunday newspapers in the US, carried a brief piece about seclusion and restraint in the versions to be delivered 26 July 2009 (available on line 25 Jul 2009). The piece doesn’t present anything new, but we can hope that it helps to sustain concern about providing appropriate treatment for individuals with disabilities.
Link to the story. Flash of the electrons to Mike Kruger of the US House of Representatives Committee on Education and Labor News of the Day: Should Schools Use Restraints on Students?. On the House Ed & Labor blog one can also see a video of Chair George Miller talking about seclusion and restraint.
For previous coverage of seclusion and restraint on EBD Blog, please use the items with that label in the “tags” section of the side rail.
The Council for Children with Behavior Disorders (CCBD), an international group concerned about children and youths with EBD, published statements about the use of seclusion and restraint with students. Although the documents appear to be in preliminary form, they began circulating on the Internet today, so I’m posting copies of the PDFs here. Watch for an update of them.
Link to the CCBD Web site.
Over on Behavior Mod Info readers can find several entries about the hearings regarding US schools’ use of seclusion and restraint. The hearings were conducted by the US House of Representatives’ Committee on Education and Labor.
(Apologies for the cross-posting to those who read Teach Effectively.)
Over on her Ed Week blog, Christina Samuels posted an entry entitled, “Use of Seclusion, Restraints on Students at Issue: Watchdog agency preparing report on practices.” She reports not only about current efforts to keep awareness of the issue high, but also about the sometimes-tragic background on the issue.
In my view, paddling and spanking should also be on the list. These are not appropriate, let alone effective, methods.
Because students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders are probably more likely to experience seclusion and restraint, it is important for the special education and mental health communities to help in sustaining awareness of the issue.
Read Ms. Samuels’ post.