Judge Rotenberg Center

I've posted a lot about the Judge Rotenberg Center in Canton, Massachusetts, so here are all of my posts and uploads related to the JRC, as well as a smattering of other links and resources that may be helpful to researchers, advocates, scholars, activists, or anyone who cares about stopping torture and abuse of disabled people.

The JRC is a residential facility (they also operate several group homes) notorious for their use of aversive electric shock as punishment for its disabled residents, as well as their use of other abusive practices, such as prolonged restraint and seclusion, food deprivation, sensory assault, and other physical abuse. They have been open since 1971.

I have been increasingly involved with efforts to close the JRC since 2010. I have drafted letters to federal and state entities regarding challenges to the use and legality of aversives. I have testified about the JRC in front of members of the Massachusetts legislature (the Joint Committee on Children, Families, and Persons with Disabilities) and the Commissioner of Developmental Services. I have also been part of the Autistic Self Advocacy Network's policy advocacy efforts regarding the JRC.

Last updated on 6 September 2014! 

Me with a poster I drew (and Shain Neumeier colored) at Occupy the JRC protest at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) White Oak campus in Silver Spring, Maryland, on 9 January 2013. Photo courtesy T. C. Hall Media.

Image description: Young Asian woman (me) with short black hair and glasses, wearing a long, dark blue wool coat standing in a street and holding a large, hand-drawn poster that says "Shocked for... hugging staff, swearing, nagging, getting out of seat, taking off coat, screaming, tensing up, closing eyes, raising hand. BAN the GED." (The word "Shocked" at the top is drawn in lightning bolt letters. The list of "offenses" is given in bullet points.) To the left of the bullet points, there is a drawing of a male-presenting child and a female-presenting child. The male-presenting child, who appears white, is wearing a light blue shirt with black horizontal stripes, brown pants, and gray shoes. The female-presenting child, who appears Latina, is wearing a purple shirt, gray pants, and light blue socks. Both children are crying with tears on their cheeks. 

Autistic Hoya's writings

Uploads to the Autistic Hoya YouTube page

Andre McCollins's Trial Coverage by Shain Neumeier
Shain Neumeier, an Autistic and disabled attorney, attended the civil trial against the Judge Rotenberg Center for shocking autistic teenager Andre McCollins 31 times in seven hours in 2002.

Selected News Articles, Letters, and Reports

Other Websites


  1. Lydia, thank you for putting this together. It is nice to have all of the info for this shameful place. I hope people take notice.

  2. Ditto on the above -- very good work on assembling this list of resources. You may want to include the New York Board of Education report as well, however...

    Or perhaps a few pieces on the Linda Cornelison affair.

    1. Added the New York report and the AutCom piece on Linda's story.

  3. Saw the CBS Evening News story on this legalized torture chamber, and am so hapoy tbat all of your efforts are getting the press and attention these disadvantaged students and residents need. God bless you for all you have done to make the public aware of these atrocities.

  4. Thank you for trying to help those who can't speak for themselves. Vulnerable people attract predators who enjoy inflicting pain. unbelievable that it's out in the open, everyone knows, and yet this house of horror is still open!

  5. BCABA candidate with ADD/sensory processing issues here, and I'm really embarrassed that ABAI allowed the JRC at their conference.


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