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Report proposes an end to restrictive practices

The Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability has released a commissioned research report into the use of ‘restrictive practices’.

The Restrictive practices: A pathway to elimination research report, compiled by researchers from the University of Melbourne, the University of Sydney and the University of Technology Sydney says restrictive practices are a significant form of violence and coercion at odds with the human rights of people with disability.

The report describes restrictive practices as legally, socially or professionally sanctioned, involving the use of physical, chemical or environmental restraints and seclusion. The report defines involuntary health treatment, guardianship, financial management , and any other non-consensual or coercive action against an individual’s will as a restrictive practice.

The report proposes an 8-point plan to eliminate restrictive practices including:

  • Making restrictive practices illegal

  • Changing attitudes and norms towards disability

  • Acknowledging and addressing historical and ongoing injustice associated with the use of restrictive practices

  • De-institutionalising and de-segregating all environments

  • Recognising the autonomy and leadership of people with disability

  • Using trauma-informed support approaches

  • Adequately resourcing independent living and full inclusion

  • Providing redress to rectify injustice.

The report explores a number of real-life case studies and examines the effectiveness of international approaches to ending restrictive practices. The report’s authors were advised by an external reference group composed of representatives from Disability Peoples Organisations.

Please direct all inquiries to the Disability Royal Commission media team on 0436 841 166 or via our email