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Proposed bill to collect data on the use of CT scream rooms. . .

posted Mar 11, 2012, 12:20 PM by Diane Willcutts   [ updated Mar 11, 2012, 12:24 PM ]
House Bill 5347 does not go nearly far enough.  Rather than simply collecting more data on scream rooms, we need to take steps to eliminate their use.  More information about this subject is on my blog, here, here, and here.

Kathleen Megan of the Hartford Courant wrote an excellent article published March 6, which covers the hearing testimony about House Bill 5347.  

From the article:

Beth Fleischmann Zweibel told state lawmakers Tuesday that her son, Joshua, now almost 11, has been placed in seclusion since he was 7 "as a method for extinguishing unwanted behaviors."

"I have personally seen him carried into a room no larger than a closet with the door slammed behind him as he was told he can come out when his screaming and crying have de-escalated," said Zweibel of Avon.

Robert J. Blackmore of Amston told of a 6-year-old boy who tried to cut his neck with a toy saw and then said to a doctor that "he wanted to die if he had to go back to school" where he "might have to go in the quiet room."

James D. McGaughey, executive director of the state Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities. . . asked the committee to consider eliminating the state law that allows any use of seclusion in individualized education plans. . . 

"Consensus has emerged that neither restraint or seclusion offer any therapeutic or educational value," McGaughey said, "and their use needs to be reduced and, if possible, eliminated. … Having to use either restraint or seclusion always indicates that there has been some kind of treatment failure. . . "