The U.N. special rapporteur on torture has opened discussions with the U.S. mission in Geneva as a first step toward investigating the Judge Rotenberg Center in Canton, Massachusetts. The JRC is thought to be the only institution in the world in which disabled and disturbed children are subjected to electric shocks as part of a behavioral approach called “aversive therapy.” The school defends the practice, saying that it receives the hardest cases, who would be hurting themselves without an effective treatment. An autism expert countered “the field moved away from this position years ago towards positive behavioral support.”
Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.