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Restraint and Seclusion Guidelines

Disability Rights

This article explains Texans' rights regarding restraint and seclusion during interventions in mental health programs.

All people have certain basic legal rights, including people who have mental illness and people who are in mental health facilities. In some cases, these rights can be restricted by a judge or by your doctor. If you are placed in a mental health facility, this material has the information you need to know about restraint and seclusion.

This content is excerpted from Disability Rights Texas' Restraint and Seclusion Guidelines: Rights of People Receiving Behavioral Interventions.

Voluntary Behavioral Interventions

During your stay in a mental health facility, there may be times when you need assistance controlling your behavior. There are two forms of behavioral interventions that can be used when you begin to feel out of control or when your behavior is disruptive: quiet time and clinical time out.

Involuntary Behavioral Interventions

Restraint, seclusion, and medication restraint can only be used in an emergency situation or in certain circumstances for medical and dental procedures. An emergency is when there is a possibility of immediate death or serious bodily harm to yourself and/or the possibility of serious physical or emotional harm to others.

Disability Rights Texas' Restraint and Seclusion Guidelines: Rights of People Receiving Behavioral Interventions explains your rights in greater detail.

If You Think Your Rights Have Been Violated

If you believe one of your rights has been violated, you should first contact your treatment team at the facility where you are located. Additionally, you have the right to talk to any of the following:

  • The Consumer Rights Officer, located at all mental health facilities
  • The TDMHMR Office of Consumer Services and Rights Protection at 800- 252-8154 or 512-323-3242
  • Disability Rights Texas

If you believe that you have been abused or neglected in the process of being put in seclusion or in restraint you should call the Texas Department of Protective and Regulatory Services at 800-647-7418. 

For further information, please contact any Disability Rights Texas office at the address or telephone number indicated on their website on the "Contact" page

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