All day I think about it, then at night I say it. Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing? I have no idea. My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that. And I intend to end up there...Who looks out with my eyes? What is the soul? I cannot stop asking. If I could taste one sip of an answer, I could break out of this prison...I didn't come here of my own accord, and I can't leave that way. Whoever brought me here will have to take me home.

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08 December 2009

ASAN seeks advocates to fight against school abuse

Bipartisan federal legislation to protect children from dangerous restraint and seclusion in classrooms will be introduced this Wednesday by U.S. Reps. George Miller (D-CA), who is chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee, and Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), who is a member of that committee, as well as the Vice Chair of the House Republican Conference. Their press conference will be webcast live from the Education and Labor Committee website at http://edlabor.house.gov at 11:00 AM EST on Wednesday, December 9, 2009.

A recent investigation by the U.S. Government Accountability Office found numerous reports of injury and, in some cases, death as a result of the inappropriate use of restraint and seclusion in classrooms. Many victims were children with disabilities. At present, there are no federal policies that prevent the misuse of restraint and seclusion in schools, and many states also lack sufficient regulation to protect children from these harmful practices.

The primary focus of the legislation above is to limit restraint and seclusion to where it will only be allowed in the event of an imminent danger (to the person or to others) and only if alternate techniques have proven ineffective. There is funding available that will flow to states to create training programs on alternatives to restraint and seclusion, including techniques such as de-escalation, conflict prevention, and conflict management.

ASAN is currently looking for volunteers to help with efforts to pass legislation that will protect students against school abuse. If you would like to help ASAN spread the word about these upcoming advocacy efforts, please write to info@autisticadvocacy.org (or visit Contact ASAN) to volunteer. Enter "Restraint and seclusion" in your email subject line. 


  1. Another resource including parent testimony:


  2. Also check out: