Judge Rotenberg Center Survivor’s Letter/ The torture and abuse of an Autistic child
January 16, 2013 in Uncategorized
Judge Rotenberg Center Survivor’s Letter
Trigger Warning: Extremely detailed description of abuse and torture of a disabled person.
This letter was written by an autistic survivor of the Judge Rotenberg Center.
It was initially sent to Nancy Weiss, past president of TASH, and is published here in this version with the author’s permission. The Judge Rotenberg Center in Canton, Massachusetts, has been torturing disabled people since 1971. My friend Shain Neumeier and I were recently at an Occupy JRC protest of the JRC last week in Silver Spring, Maryland. It is because of accounts like the one below that we are absolutely determined to see the JRC closed for good. This is unconscionable and morally abhorrent.
The Judge Rotenberg Center received a warning letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last month for their use of the new graduated electronic decelerator (GED), the device that administers painful, powerful electric shocks as punishment to disabled residents. They were called to a meeting on January 9th in Maryland, which is why the protest was held. Under Commissioner Elin Howe, the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services promulgated regulations last year prohibiting the use of the GED on any new students, but the GED is still legally allowed to be used on students admitted prior to their promulgation. The previous and current United Nations Special Rapporteurs on Torture, Manfred Nowak and Juan Mendez, have condemned the JRC’s practices as torture. Yet they continue to be allowed to torture the disabled people committed to their institution.
Dear Ms. Weiss
Hello my name is xxx. I was told you are someone I can talk to in confidence and be safe. I would like to share with you my letter that I wrote to the FDA about life inside JRC and on the GEDs. It was torture being there. And I suffered so much. I am still tormented. Here is my letter of testimony:
My name is xxx and I attended the Judge Rotenberg Center. I am writing to ask you to please reconsider your approval of the GED for use on ANY human being. I was placed on the GED about 2 months after arriving. I started out on the GED-1, and during my last few years I was placed on the GED-4. There are so many of us that were tortured with these devices, this “treatment”. I believe the reason why more ex-students haven’t spoken out is because they are either non-verbal, afraid, or believe that no one cares about us or it will not make a difference. Parents and families that speak and rally in favor of the GED, are not the ones who have to experience it, the pain and anxiety, day after day for years on end.
The GED IS harmful. Even the GED-1. I was burned many times, and I still have scars on my stomach from being repeatedly shocked there, by the FDA approved GED-1. The electrodes had actually burned into my skin. I experienced long term loss of sensation and numbness in my lower left leg, after getting a shock there. I felt searing pain all the way down to the bottom of my foot, and was left with no feeling in my skin from the knee down for about a year. Again, this was with the GED-1. After complaining to JRC nursing about my leg, they told me to tell the Neurologist about it during a follow up visit for a suspected seizure. He asked the staff what that device was on my leg, and they explained to him it was an electrode. After their explanation, the Neurologist said, “Well, I don’t know what that thing is, but it needs to come off.” JRC left the device off my leg for about a year, then decided on their own, without sending me back to a Neurologist, it was ok to put it back. I have seen students with torso electrodes accidentally placed on their spine area, get a shock there and be violently bent backwards.
read the rest of the article here
Not the original poster