What is a “Restrictive Practice”

“Restrictive practice’ means any practice or intervention that has the effect of restricting the rights or freedom of movement of a person with disability.”

There is a lot of discussion about what is a restrictive practice and the definition above describes it fully.  Sometimes restrictive practices have to be introduced to protect a person with a disability from harm.

If a person with a disability needs to have a restrictive practice introduced into their support plan it needs to be done with people who write behaviour support plans. They are called behaviour support practitioners. A behaviour support practitioner can help a person with a disability to live their best life. They help by providing behaviour support. They will write the plan with the person concerned, their family and other people who support them. For example,  teachers, support workers and even  their doctor.

The NDIS Commission regulates five types of restrictive practices. This means there are laws and rules about their use.

They look at how they are used, they include:

1. Seclusion, for example, being made to stay in a room on your own.

2. Chemical restraint, for example, taking medicine to help stop you from hurting yourself.

3. Mechanical restraint, for example, putting on a helmet to stop you from hurting your head if you are banging it on a wall. • Wearing certain clothing such as a body suit to stop you from picking your skin and hurting yourself.

4. Physical restraint, this is when someone stops you from moving a part of your body to stop a behaviour. For example, if someone holds your arm down to stop you from hitting yourself.

5. Environmental restraint, for example if someone locks the fridge to stop you from eating too much food, locks the front door to stop you from leaving your home.

The Rules say that regulated restrictive practices should only be used if a person with a disability or others are at risk of getting hurt • help keep everyone safe • be used after trying other things first, be used for the shortest time possible. • be used less or stopped over time.

This may involve teaching a person with a disability new things or helping them to join in activities and be included in a behaviour support plan. This plan must be written with the person with a disability,  their family and other people who support them. A copy of the plan must also be given to the NDIS Commission.

The plan must be authorised or approved for use by an NDIS provider (if required). This happens in different ways in each state and territory and be reported to us when used by NDIS providers.

Families do not need to tell NDIS about their use of restrictive practices.

Our Snuggly Bags are designed for children who do not stay under blankets while sleeping, this applies to many children including those with special needs.

Snuggly Bags keep children warm and covered overnight. They have a zip front, sleeves for ease of movement and padding for warmth.