Breaking News: Congress Introduces Bipartisan Seclusion & Restraint Legislation

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Yesterday the Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions of the U S House of Representatives introduced new bipartisan legislation aimed at curbing the abuses of seclusion and restraints as behavior management techniques. The press release notes that the victims of the abuse of seclusion and restraint are often children with disabilities. The legislation is summarized here. Here is a video of the press conference by Chairman George Miller (D - CA).

The legislation was triggered by a study by the National Disability Rights Network which unveiled horror stories from every state. That study was followed by a similarly gruesome report by the Government Accountability Office and by Congressional hearings.

If adopted, the bill would require minimum standards for seclusion and restraint. It also requires each state to adopt procedures and systems for monitoring and enforcing the safety provisions. Before it becomes law, the bill must first pass the House and Senate and be signed by the President. If you have strong feelings about abuse and restraint, write to your representative and senators.

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