E Advocates #17: Tell the FDA to End the Use of Electric Shock for Behavior Modification | Emmaus Homes

E-Advocates #17

Tell the FDA to End the Use of Electric Shock for Behavior Modification
May 20, 2024 | Blog by Alyson Goforth

The FDA wants to ban electrical stimulation devices used to treat self-injurious or aggressive behavior citing an “unreasonable and substantial” risk to public health. (FDA/Flickr)[/caption]The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently proposed a rule to ban the use of electric stimulation devices for behavior modification. A ban was finalized in 2020 after evidence was found that it caused psychological and physical risks. These included burns, tissue damage, worsening underlying symptoms, depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Unfortunately, the rule was overturned in 2021, and now we need your voice. You are crucial in supporting this critical measure. As advocates for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), we must ensure the swift implementation of this ban to protect the health and safety of vulnerable individuals. 

Messaging your legislator, or in this case, the FDA, is one impactful way that you can make your voice heard. It is important to understand the value of your personal experiences and stories. Some of the individuals that Emmaus has the honor of supporting need you to be a microphone for their voices. Here is an outline that you can use when emailing: 

1. Share Your Experience: Introduce yourself & describe your experience working with individuals with developmental disabilities! Highlight your experience and expertise to establish credibility.

2. Share Personal Stories or Examples: Incorporate real-life experiences or challenges you have encountered as a provider or advocate. Personal stories have a powerful impact on policymakers and help illustrate the practical implications of the proposed ban.

 3. Connect to the Proposed Rule: Explain why the issue of electric stimulation devices is important to you and how it directly affects the individuals you support or advocate for.

4. Express Appreciation and Agreement: Thank the FDA for its efforts to address the harmful effects of electric stimulation devices.

 5. Support Swift Implementation: Urge the FDA to expedite the implementation of the ban without further delay. Stress the importance of prioritizing the health and safety of individuals with disabilities and ending the use of ESDs as soon as possible.

Tell the FDA to #StopTheShock!
Take Action by May 28


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