June 16, 2006

Oddly, New York Refused to Fund Electric Shock Therapy for Autistic Children

This one is incredible to me. New York, easily the state spending the most on treating children with autism and other spectrum disorders, cut off the $50 million it was paying a school in Canton Mass for about 150 children because the school uses backpacks to shock the children with "bee sting"-like electric jolts when they misbehave:
The Rotenberg Center provides an intensive, 24-hour program that begins with a typical school setting, but about half the residents require the "aversive therapy" of electric shock, according to Rotenberg staff. The center describes the one- to two-second shocks as similar to a bee sting. For years, the state has contracted with the facility, where autistic and other disabled students wear backpack-like devices that shock them when they misbehave.
What's next? Defunding a lobotomy clinic for autistic kids in Maine?

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