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Fwd: Over 150 Organizations Support Keeping All Students Safe Act ( restraint/ seclusion bills)

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  • Sandy Alperstein
    Keep the support for this bill coming - call, email, share, and encourage local, state, and national organizations to sign on to the letter! We need to
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 16, 2012
    Keep the support for this bill coming - call, email, share, and encourage local, state, and national organizations to sign on to the letter!  We need to protect all schoolchildren from the abuses of restraint & seclusion!
    Sandy Alperstein, Illinois
    Volunteer Co-Webmaster, Our Children Left Behind (http://www.ourchildrenleftbehind.com) (special education advocacy volunteers on a national level); Special Kids, Special Families (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/specialkidsspecialfamilies) (volunteers providing support, education, and advocacy for families with special needs in the NW suburban Chicago area)
    -----Original Message-----
    From: Jess Butler <jessicabutler100@...>
    To: jessicabutler2 <jessicabutler2@...>
    Sent: Mon, Jul 16, 2012 7:09 am
    Subject: Over 150 Organizations Support Keeping All Students Safe Act ( restraint/ seclusion bills)

    Dear folks,
    Thank you very much for supporting the two Keeping All  Students Safe Act bills, H.R. 1381 and S.2020.  These bills will protect schoolchildren from dangerous restraint  and seclusion.   We received over 150 national, state, and local  organizations in support of the two bills!   The letter was one of two letters Senator Harkin highlit during his opening statement at the restraint/seclusion hearing and his staff thanked all of us for  it. 

    We will continue to collect more sign-ons and to update the lists. We have over 170 organizations and it would be great to get 250!!!  There are 21 states represented on the Senate committee, and building support in a  number of them is crucial to our efforts.  Please feel free to send the letter to other  groups and organizations and ask them to sign on.  They can email me or  sign on through this link http://svy.mk/LtrRestraSe (this helps us by allowing us to automatically download the information into an Excel spreadsheet).

    I  am attaching the letters to the Senate and House Chair and Ranking Members for your records.   I have zipped the two files together into one for ease in emailing.

    Please feel free to share with others. 

    Thank you very much for your sign-on.  The full letter and list is below, as well. 
    Jessica Butler
    Congressional Affairs Coordinator
    Autism National Committee
    22 years of advocating for people with autism and related disabilities
    email: jessica@...


    Re:       Over 150 National, State, and Local Organizations Ask Congress to Pass the Keeping All Students Safe Act (S.2020/H.R. 1381)

    We, the undersigned, believe it is time for a national policy addressing restraint and seclusion in our schools for all children. In 2009, a Government Accountability Office study found children have been injured, traumatized, and even killed through restraint and seclusion in schools. In March 2012, data released by the Department of Education showed that nearly 40,000 students were physically restrained during the 2009-10 school year; 70% of whom were students with disabilities. The data also showed that these practices are disproportionately used upon minority students.

    There have been numerous news reports of students harmed by restraints and seclusion. Less than 1/3 of states restrict restraint and seclusion use to emergencies involving an imminent risk of physical harm. It is important that use of restraint and seclusion be limited to these emergencies. While federal law protects children and adults from the use of restraints and seclusion in hospitals, no similar federal laws exist to protect children in schools. We urge Congress to pass the Keeping All Students Safe Act bills (S.2020 and H.R. 1381), and create minimum restraint/seclusion standards in schools that will protect all children.

    The Keeping All Students Safe Act will promote a shift toward preventing problematic behavior through the use of de-escalation techniques, conflict management and evidence-based positive behavioral interventions and supports. This shift will help school personnel understand the needs of their students and safely address the source of challenging behaviors – a better result for everyone in the classroom. In many cases, the use of positive supports and interventions greatly diminishes and even eliminates the need to use restraint and seclusion. For example, the Centennial School in Pennsylvania, which serves children in 35 school districts, has cut the use of restraint and seclusion from well over 1,000 occurrences per year to less than ten through the use of positive supports. Reports and studies have also shown that students and staff are safer when positive interventions and supports, rather than restraint and seclusion, are used in schools. Worker's Compensation costs even decrease significantly.

    S. 2020 and H.R. 1381 will protect all children in school. They will ensure that restraints are used only in emergencies posing an imminent threat of physical danger. If less restrictive and dangerous measures like de-escalation, conflict management, and positive behavioral supports will prevent the threat, the bills will require that they be used. The bills will provide similar protections from seclusion. They will require prompt parental notification. They will ban the use of restraints that impede breathing or harm children or staff. The bills will ensure that staff are properly trained in evidence-based methods to minimize the use of restraint and seclusion and to protect children and staff.

    We ask Congress to pass the Keeping All Students Safe Act and make our schools safer for students and staff. America needs more than the current patchwork of state laws to ensure that every child is afforded protection.

    For more information about this letter, please contact Jessica Butler, Congressional Affairs Coordinator, Autism National Committee, jessica@... (www.autcom.org)


                    National Organizations

    Advocacy Institute

    American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

    American Association on Health and Disability

    American Psychiatric Association

    American Psychiatric Nurses Association

    Association on Higher Education And Disability (AHEAD)

    Autism National Committee

    Autism Society of America

    Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law

    Boat People SOS, Inc.

    Center for Law and Education

    Cherab Foundation

    Conference of Educational Administrators of Schools and Programs for the Deaf

    Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc. (COPAA)

    CPS Initiative

    Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)

    Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund (DREDF)

    Disability Rights Legal Center

    Families Against Restraint and Seclusion

    Gay Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN)

    Gray Panthers

    Higher Education Consortium on Special Education

    Learning Disabilities Association of America

    Mental Health America

    National Association for Children's Behavioral Health

    National Association of Rural Mental Health

    National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors

    National Autism Association

    National Disability Rights Network

    National Down Syndrome Congress

    National Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health

    National Fragile X Foundation

    National Organization for Women Foundation

    National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND)


    Parents and Teachers Against Violence in Education, Inc.

    Pediatric Stroke Network, Inc.

    Prader-Willi Syndrome Association (USA)

    Self-Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE)

    Southern Poverty Law Center

    Speech & Language Disorders in Children

    Teacher Education Division of the Council on Exceptional Children

    The Arc of the United States

    The National Alliance on Mental Illness

    The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL)

    InterNational Council on Infertility Information Dissemination Inc. (INCIID Inc.)

    Tourette Syndrome Association, Inc.

    Family Network on Disabilities

           State Organizations by State

    Down Syndrome Society of Mobile County
    Area Board XIII
    California Safe Schools
    CAPCA (California Association for Parent-Child Advocacy)
    Educate. Advocate.
    Families For Early Autism Treatment
    Hope PTA
    Independent Living Resource Center, Inc.
    Learning Rights Law Center
    Parents Advocating Together
    West Los Angeles Trauma and Crime Victim Center
    Colorado Cross Disability Coalition
    Community Link
    Mental Health America of Colorado
    The Arc of the Pikes Peak Region
    Advocates for Justice and Education
    disAbility Solutions for Independent Living
    Reveresco ABA Therapy
    Apraxia in Metro Atlanta
    Autism Society Georgia Chapter
    Georgia Families Against Restraint and Seclusion
    Gwinnett SToPP
    Living Independence for Everyone (LIFE), Inc.
    Parent to Parent of Georgia
    Parent to Parent of Georgia
    Hawai'i Parents Special Education Advisory Council (HIP-SEAC)
    The Arc of Iowa
    Tri State Down Syndrome Network
    Access Living
    Illinois Children’s Mental Health Partnership
    LIFE Center for Independent Living
    McHenry County Mental Health Board
    Mental Health Summit of Illinois
    Mothers on a Mission, Inc.
    Northwestern IL Center for Independent Living
    Special Kids, Special Families
    The Arc of Indiana
    Disability Rights Center of Kansas
    Kentucky Protection & Advocacy
    The Arc of Kentucky
    Disability Law Center (of Massachusetts)
    Independent Living Center of the North Shore & Cape Ann, Inc.
    Northeast Independent Living Program Inc
    Stavros Center for Independent Living, Inc.
    LDA of St. Mary's County
    Maryland Coalition for Inclusive Education
    BenzieAdvocacy Rights Council
    Michigan Alliance for Special Education
    Michigan Association of Community Mental Health Boards
    Michigan Developmental Disabilities Council
    Michigan Disability Rights Coalition
    Michigan Protection and Advocacy Services Inc.
    Oakland County Community Mental Health Authority
    The Arc Michigan
    The Respect ABILITY Law Center
    Woodlands Behavioral Healthcare Network
    Minnesota Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities
    Coastal Women for Change
    Disability Rights Mississippi
    Just Advocacy of Mississippi
    Mississippi Coalition for Citizens with Disabilities
    Mississippi Human Service Agenda
    Nollie Jenkins Family Center, Inc.
    Parents United Together
    ADAPT Montana
    Parents, Let's Unite for Kids - PLUK
    Council for Children's Rights
    Disability Rights North Carolina
    Gaston Residential Services, Inc.
    Monarch/The Arc of Stanly County
    Piedmont Down Syndrome Support Network
    Tammy Lynn Center for Developmental Disabilities
    The Arc of North Carolina
    North Carolina School Social Work Association
    ADAPT Nebraska
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