DCFS bans use of shackles to transport minors in their care

CHICAGO — The Department of Children and Family Services has placed a ban on using shackles to transport minors in their care.

The rule is effective immediately.

According to the Chicago Tribune, DCFS said in a Wednesday federal court filing that “neither DCFS nor its contractors shall ever use handcuffs and/or shackles for transporting any youth in DCFS care.”

The ban comes after two teenagers were restrained by their ankles for about an hour, while being driven from a shelter in Chicago to Palatine on Oct. 1. The driver worked for a DCFS contractor, Jim Stewart Transportation Company.

A spokesperson for the department said using shackles was against the department’s policy.

The Tribune reports that DCFS will allow the use of “soft restraints,” made out of cloth material, in certain circumstances when a judge or psychiatrist calls for it.

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