On December 2nd, 2008 DRW released its report entitled “A Tragic Result of a Failure to Act – the Death of Angellika Arndt” detailing the events surrounding the asphyxiation death of seven year-old Angellika Arndt, who died in 2006 as the result of an inappropriate use of physical restraint and seclusion in a state-licensed children’s day treatment program in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. This report was delivered to the Secretaries of the Departments of Health Services, Children and Families and the Governor. DRW hopes that the lessons learned from Angie’s tragic death will translate into action toward increased use of positive behavioral supports, a decrease in the use of seclusion and restraint with children and a prohibition of the use of restraints that have the potential to cause serious injury or death, as well as changes in the provision and oversight of day treatment services for children in the state of Wisconsin. DRW believes that the Department has not taken sufficient steps to protect children from inappropriate use of seclusion and restraint, and has urged the Department to declare a moratorium on the use of the type of restraint that resulted in Angie’s death, finalize a plan to provide training on ways to reduce seclusion and restraint use in children’s programs, and review the use of children’s day treatment to assure it is appropriate and properly regulated and funded. These and other recommendations are detailed in the report.
To download a copy of the report: A Tragic Result of a Failure to Act