Saturday, May 17, 2008

Justice Delayed


photo credit-densaer
creative commons license


Well, it might be a case of too little, too late for many who have been tortured at the Judge Rotenberg Center (JRC) in the past, but I'll take anything at this point.

Yesterday's Boston Globe reported that the JRC is being investigated, and that state investigators went in to the center last week and seized boxes of documents.

I started writing about the JRC about 15 months ago, but they've been up to no good for a lot longer than that. The JRC is famous for using electric shocks in autistic individuals as a form of "aversive therapy". Inmates "Students" at the center wear backpacks with batteries and shocking devices which torturers "patient care technicians" can activate at any time by pushing a button. They shock children for such things as being "defiant", or for matters as trivial as "nagging a teacher".

The state of Massachusetts has considered laws in the past to ban spanking of children, but still allows the JRC to continue its daily torture of children.

According to the Globe article:

State Police seized documents late last week from the offices of the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton that are related to a prank phone call last summer that led two students to wrongfully receive dozens of punishing electrical shocks, according to two people with direct knowledge of the investigation.


I guess all of the shocking things that go on at the JRC on a daily basis, like starvation and shocking "students" is just fine, but give some of those same "students" some extra shocks and NOW they're sitting up and taking notice.

The article goes on to say:

The collection of evidence has to do with a yearlong grand jury investigation led by the office of Attorney General Martha Coakley, said Kenneth Mollins, a New York lawyer who has filed several lawsuits against the school and who said he spoke to a representative of Coakley's office about the Rotenberg investigation. Mollins said he was told the grand jury is also examining possible financial improprieties by the school.


I just hope that this investigation sheds enough light on this stinkhole of a place that the public finally sees it for what it is.

10 comments:

Camille said...

JRC is one of those things that almost overwhelms my brain. I suppose that's kind of how it's been functioning, people don't really believe it could be that bad, it just couldn't be...

I wonder if Matthew Israel will ever face any consequences for what he's done for years and years now?

Casdok said...

And so do i.

David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction) said...

Hi Joe...

You said: "The state of Massachusetts has considered laws in the past to ban spanking of children, but still allows the JRC to continue its daily torture of children."

Call me a pedantic wee bastard, but...

... if the kids at JRC are "students", why the fuck do they have "patient care technicians"?

Something doesn't add up.

It's supposed to be a school, not a hospital.

That may have some bearing on how a 'school' gets away with this sort of shit.

David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction) said...

Camille: "I wonder if Matthew Israel will ever face any consequences for what he's done for years and years now?"

He claims a lineage (professionally speaking) back to Skinner.

Skinner was avidly against the use of punishment because it was ineffective. Skinner would be spinning in his grave if he could see what his former supervisee was getting up to and sticking his name to. You know who I mean... Spinning Skinner.

Club 166 said...

My mistake, David.

I checked their website. They don't call them patient care technicians. They call them "mental health assistants". Your point is still valid, though.

Camille and Casdok,
One can hope that Matthew Israel faces real consequences. Sometimes once grand juries get started, they take on a life of their own, and all the influence that Israel has built up over the years with the legislature won't be able to stop them. I hope that's the case this time.

Joe

Mrs. C said...

Thank you for blogging this update. I know given my experiences with Elf that there *must* be much more out there we never hear about.

Marla said...

Sigh. I am so glad you are following this. It is a very sad situation.

Ed said...

I hope these documents tell a lot.

People who abuse people in institutions can be pretty creative with how things are described in documents.

If they haven't thought they would be investigated they may not have been so careful though.

Anonymous said...

The worthless subhuman filth known as Matthew Israel will probably die soon, and I for one suggest that we begin now planning for a funeral protest. I'm imagining a large group, loudly disrupting any proceedings, and declaring how glad we are that that scum no longer exists.