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NCJ Number: NCJ 124810     Find in a Library
Title: Isolation and Restraint in Juvenile Correctional Facilities
Author(s): J Mitchell ; C Varley
  Journal: Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry  Volume:29  Issue:2  Dated:(March 1990)  Pages:251-255
Date Published: 1990
Page Count: 5
  Annotation: While the mental health profession has begun to realize the dangers of using isolation and restraint interventions, the juvenile corrections field has not developed the same awareness. This paper describes these practices and suggests alternatives that will standardize the use of isolation and restraint without threatening safety and security.
Abstract: Isolation is the removal of a youth from the living environment to a separate room for the purposes of behavioral control; mechanical restraints may be used to calm an individual or avoid injury. There are similarities between incarcerated and psychiatrically hospitalized youth; the former display high rates of neuropsychiatric morbidity and severe emotional disturbances, with similar psychopathology and "acting out" behavior to the latter group. Isolation in juvenile correctional facilities tends to be a long-term intervention and lacks a system of standardization regarding length and site of isolation. The evidence that isolation can create a variety of mental and behavioral disturbances bears out the authors' impression that programs relying on excessive isolation experience high rates of aversive behaviors among residents. The use of mechanical restraints also varies between institutions in terms of frequency and length of use, as well as use of soft restraints versus handcuffs. Recommendations for facility administrators include elimination of separate isolation units, creation of an upper time limit on isolation, elimination of restraints or adherence to stringent guidelines for proper restraint, and a variety of other intervention measures. 2 tables, 3 figures, 34 references. (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Juvenile correctional facilities ; Solitary confinement
Index Term(s): Discipline ; Inmate segregation ; Handcuffs
Type: Survey
Country: United States of America
Language: English
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