Canton, MA - After a long, ongoing battle with state officials, a Massachusetts school will still be allowed to use electric shock therapy on their special needs children, sources suggest.
The United States of America only has one school like it, and it’s known as the Judge Rotenberg Center. The Judge Rotenberg Center is located in Canton, Massachusetts, and it is allegedly the only school in this country that allows the use of a graduated electronic decelerator to control behaviors in certain special needs kids.
State officials have been battling this awful treatment since the year 2013, until last week. Judge Katherine Fields made her decision, and it wasn’t to side with the state officials.
With the decision being made, many concerned citizens have come forward wanting to know what this tactic really entailed. So, what is this treatment?
According to the Food and Drug Administration, the treatment that the JRC chooses to have in its school system is known as “aversive conditioning.” This treatment provides the student with a negative stimulation when any unwanted action occurs. For example, wrist bands are put around the children’s hands, and if they do anything wrong, they get a small zap. This is supposed to have a negative reaction on the child, therefore stopping the unwanted action and hopefully eliminating the bad behaviors.
After many opinions were stated, the JRC Parents’ Group came forward. They told NBC News that this method is only a last resort. In particular, GED, or graduated electronic decelerator shocks, are only used for students that self-injure themselves or those who express violent behaviors.
To further the reasoning behind GED, the JRC Parents’ Group added that the treatment is only put into place after an extensive review is done. This review shows what has been used for the child along with what has not worked for the child.
The JRC school understands the public’s concern. They would like to reassure the public by stating this treatment does not do the same as electroconvulsive therapy. It may cause a little bit of pain, but it does not go as far as shocking the brain.
Even still, the FDA has put warnings forth of what GED could potentially do to students, including but not limited to, burns, trauma, falls, and seizures. The FDA has also put forth a proposal to ban this source of treatment, but the rule has yet to go through.