IT’S NO BREAKFAST CLUB: A LOOK AT THE DUE PROCESS REQUIREMENTS OF CHILDREN IN PRIVATE RESIDENTIAL TREATMENT CENTERS
30 Pages Posted:
Date Written: January 25, 2020
In many states, youths are put into private residential treatment centers (RTC) without the youths’ consent or judicial review of the admission decision. Every state has a statute that addresses the due process rights of a person being civilly committed to a state-run psychiatric institute. While some states have statutorily extended those rights to youth, and some states have gone as far as to expand the statutes to include private institutions, there remains a gap in the protections for many youth in all states.
This purpose of this article is to argue that a federal statute should be enacted to ensure equal protections across states lines that will prevent private hospitals from admitting youth without meeting the admission criteria for civil commitments. As the Supreme Court has recognized that these youth are entitled to due process rights, the statute should extend protections to the youth.
The federal government has the power to enact legislation that protects citizens’ Fifth and Fourteen Amendment rights. Private residential treatment centers must be treated as state actors when determining patient rights. Children have a substantial liberty interest in not being confined unnecessarily. All involuntary civil commitments must be required to conform to the civil commitment requirements that an individual is found to pose a risk of self-harm or harm to others.
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