Disability act review
10 March 2014,
PROPOSED amendments to the Disability Services Act 2006 relating to restrictive practices have been welcomed by the Queensland Law Society.
Restrictive practices can involve physical and chemical restraints including physical confinement, clothing that restricts mobility or constant sedation.
There is no requirement for a service provider to set out how or why restrictive practices are used under current legislation, a position which needs to change says Queensland Law Society immediate past president Annette Bradfield.
“The proposed amendments ensure that there is more transparency with the use of these practices,” she says.
“This addresses previous concerns that the patients’ support networks were not involved with the restrictive practices plan.”
The Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services has been consulting with QLS about the amendments as they are prepared to be put to parliament.
“Queensland Law Society supports legislation that is fair and just and that does not unnecessarily impinge on the rights and liberties of individuals,” says Bradfield.
“The proposed amendments emphasise the importance of effective monitoring and accountability in dealing with at-risk members of the community.
“Involving the adult’s family and doctor is an important step in improving transparency in the treatment process.
“We need to humanely treat the community’s most vulnerable, balanced with any risk they pose to themselves or others.