Senator Harkin’s Keeping All Students Safe Act

Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP) Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) introduced the Keeping All Students Safe Act, S. 2020, right before the holiday break. The bill is a companion to the House bill, HR 1381, that was introduced last year by Rep. George Miller (D-CA). Both bills would prohibit use of mechanical restraints, chemical restraints, or physical restraints that restrict breathing. The use of seclusion or restraint could not be included in a student’s IEP. Physical restraint would be allowed only in emergency situations and would require debriefing sessions with parents and staff. S 2020 has no sponsors at this time; HR 1381 has 28 co-sponsors, one of whom is a Republican. Senator Harkin is seeking bipartisan support.

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