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Physical restraint in residential childcare : the experiences of young people and residential workers

Steckley, L. and Kendrick, A. (2008) Physical restraint in residential childcare : the experiences of young people and residential workers. Childhood, 15 (4). pp. 552-569. ISSN 0907-5682

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Abstract

There have long been concerns about the use of physical restraint in residential care. This article presents the findings of a qualitative study that explores the experiences of children, young people and residential workers of physical restraint. The research identifies the dilemmas and ambiguities for both staff and young people, and participants discuss the situations where they feel physical restraint is appropriate as well as their concerns about unjustified or painful restraints. They describe the negative emotions involved in restraint but also those situations where, through positive relationships and trust, restraint can help young people through unsafe situations.