A podcast from the Alliance Against Seclusion and Restraint
Restraint and Seclusion: Ending the school-based trauma cycle
Restraint and seclusion are crisis management strategies that are used in many schools across the nation and the world. Physical Restraint, is exactly what it sounds like, it is a personal restriction that immobilizes or reduces the ability of a student to move his or her torso, arms, legs or head freely. Seclusion is the involuntary confinement of a student alone in a room or area from which the student is physically prevented from leaving. These interventions are dangerous and have led to serious injuries and even death in students, teachers and staff.
Restraint and seclusion can lead to trauma, injury and death. In this live session we will talk about the impact of these crisis management approach, and alternatives to better support students, teachers, and staff.
The Troubled Teen Industry (TTI) A live panel discussion with TTI survivors
Each year, the guardianship of thousands of vulnerable youth are signed over to private and for-profit residential programs that lack state and federal oversight. This means that these programs can be established fairly spontaneously and are not required to report what goes on within the facility to the state or federal government.
These programs may label themselves as wilderness, therapeutic, boot camp, or religious programs, and are collectively known as the “troubled teen industry” (tti). The TTI operates out of sight and out of mind, typically in remote locations away from public scrutiny. It is a multi-billion dollar industry that exploits vulnerable youth & their families for profit.
Thousands of cases of abuse and neglect have been reported in the media over the last 40 years. During this time, young people in the TTI have experienced human rights violations, abuse and injustices. These include but are not limited to:
• Seclusion & Restraint: Including seclusion, restraint, isolation, solitary confinement & strict restriction of communication with the outside world including contact with family, mandated reporters, lawyers and advocates.
• Unethical & abusive force of Transporting ( kidnaping) young people.
• Abuse of Religious Exemptions: Including physical abuse, emotional abuse, racist verbal abuse, neglect, medical neglect, and death
• Conversion therapy harmful therapeutic to change another individual’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.
• Human Rights Violations: Including sleep deprivation, food deprivation, forced feeding, restrictions on marriage based on race, lack of freedom of religion, exploitation of labor and exploitation of traumatic experiences.
During this event we will talk to several survivors of the trouble teen industry and learn why change is necessary to protect our children and youth.
Our guests included:
Kayla is a resilient foster care survivor of institutional abuse. They hope to use their insight of the child welfare system to spread awareness of the civil rights violations happening day in and day out, especially within the Troubled Teen Industry. She has written articles for The Hill, Ms. Magazine, and Children's Rights. They are currently attending Palo Alto College in San Antonio, Texas. They have been a certified dog trainer since 2016 and found healing through working with dogs of all breeds. They currently work with a pit bull service dog.
Robert bucklin is a 27 year old Patient CareAssociate studying to be an ICU Nusre who is also heavily involved in bringing awareness to the abuses within the Agape Boarding School for boys, a private school located in Missouri- a school that he attended his whole teenage life.
Josh Cook is a survivor of the “Troubled Teen Industry” who began his anti-TTI advocacy by helping to facilitate the closure of Freedom Village USA, a religious TTI program. He also works on prisoner rights issues, where he has been involved in several campaigns. He is based in Alabama, where he lives with his grandson.
Gabriel Joseph Gonzáles is a survivor that educates and advocates for young people’s rights in The Troubled Teen Industry. In 2019, he worked with the Freedom Village Experience survivors group on awareness projects that involved New York and South Carolina. In 2020, Gabriel co-facilitated a collaborative campaign with the National Youth Rights Association to ask congress to regulate controversial care practices and challenges in "Troubled Teen" Residential care facilitation. He currently resides in New York City and is an active member of his community.
Chelsea Maldonado is an Atlanta-based activist and investigative researcher with a focus on youth rights and criminal justice reform. She is a survivor of the so-called "Troubled Teen Industry," having attended the notorious WWASPS' program, Tranquility Ba
Why behavior plans don’t work
Learn why so many behavior plans don't work and how to create one that will work with Diane Gould LCSW. Ms. Gould has worked for the Northwest Suburban Special Education Organization and the Niles Township District for Special Education. She has served as a consultant and been a guest lecturer for many area school districts. During her twelve years working in schools, Ms Gould developed new parent support programs. She also created and led many peer buddy groups creating a community of support for students in special education programs.
Shifting Therapies towards an empathetic and respectful Neurodiversity Paradigm
A special presentation with Julie Roberts, a neurodivergence-affirming therapist, and founder of the Therapist Neurodiversity Collective: “Shifting Therapies towards an empathetic and respectful Neurodiversity Paradigm”.
Why does therapy need to change? (Whole body listening, social communication expectations, compliance-based therapies, and outcomes, pathologizing natural autistic ways of interacting and communicating, tolerance, or the 'extinguishing' of sensory issues.)
In what ways are the majority of therapists "behind" in contemporary Autism research knowledge? (Autism research that is done in conjunction with and by autistic researchers, Monotropism, Autistic Masking, and Camouflage, The Double Empathy Problem, Diversity in Social Intelligence)
How do neurodivergence-affirming therapies reduce situations that lead to restraint and seclusion? (Therapy becomes about reaching the person where they are, goals become less about compliance and more about increasing personal agency and self-determination.)
Julie Roberts is a licensed, ASHA certified Speech-Language Pathologist and the Founder of Therapist Neurodiversity Collective who has been practicing for over 20 years. She is a frequent presenter on overviews of Autism and Neurodiversity, and why Social Skills Training is an ableist therapy model (based on contemporary research and autistic lived experiences). A frequent blogger who writes articles on disability rights, empathetic therapy practices, and advocacy efforts, Julie is a passionate and tireless patient/client/student rights advocate and activist.
Restorative Practices in Schools More Than Sitting in a Circle Singing Kumbaya
Restorative Justice and its implementation is often misunderstood in schools. However when done correctly, it can be the golden panacea to building a relational school.
In this presentation I will share my successes and challenges of implementation in various school settings as well as sharing how it can be successfully used with all students, including those from a trauma background, ADHD and ASD.
I will also provide some practical tips that can be used in all classrooms and schools.
I have been an educator for 35 years, working in a multitude of roles including teacher, Behaviour support consultant, Head of Special Needs and Principal. My Principal role has been in low socioeconomic areas and Northern Territory in the remote end of Australia working with our indigenous communities.
I am passionate about shaping our schools to ensure that EVERY student is understood, safe and able to succeed no matter what their need.
I am a Doctorate Candidate with QUT researching the intersection between Complex Trauma and Developmental Disabilities in school settings.
Robin Roscigno: Moving Past Compliance-Based Teaching
How can you move past teaching compliance towards teaching self-determination and self-advocacy? Many programs that specialize in education for Neurodivergent children are rooted in compliance-based techniques and behavioral control. This talk explores the history of behaviorism in schooling for neurodivergent kids and will offer alternative ways to think about and respond to student behavior.
Robin Roscigno is a scholar/practicioner specializing in education for Neurodivergent children. She is a PhD candidate at Rutgers University’s Graduate School of Education and consults with school districts and parents on a range of topics. Most recently, Robin was awarded the Irving K. Zola Award for Emerging Scholar in Disabiliy Studies from the Society for Disability Studies for her article “Semiotic Stalemate: Resisting Restraint and Seclusion through Guattari’s Micropolitics of Desire” which combined her scholarly interests with her anti-restraint and seclusion activism.