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Behavior Support
Behavior Support and Management Philosophy  
Our Kids organizational behavior support and management philosophy is to create a culture that promotes safety, respect, healing and positive behavior for all of our clients. 
Our Kids of Miami-Dade/Monroe, Inc expects each child in the network of care to reside in an environment in which the child is valued, respected and well cared for.  Our Kids prohibits the use of restrictive behavior management or intervention of any kind to include isolation, manual or mechanical restraint or locked seclusion by Our Kids staff, Our Kids Network providers and foster parents.
As with all children, the children in care within the Our Kids network should be guided and nurtured so that they may grow to become adults who demonstrate self-control, compassion, respect for others and an ability to care for themselves.

Our Kids endorses best practice standards which encourage adults working with children to set clear expectations and limits, develop regular routines, encourage cooperation and problem solving, and use a full range of positive interventions before using more intrusive interventions.

Strategies for Maintaining Safe Environments
The following strategies are utilized by Our Kids staff, network providers and foster parents to maintain a safe environment and prevent the need for restrictive behavior management interventions:
a. Recognizing aggressive and out-of-control behavior, psychosocial issues, medical conditions, and other contributing factors that may lead to a crisis;
b. Understanding how staff behavior can influence the behavior of children and adults; and
c. Management of age-appropriate, but potentially dangerous behavior, for example, ways to protect a child who runs into the street so as not to harm him/her.
Our Kids staff, network providers and foster parents utilize the following methods for de-escalating volatile situations when they occur:
a. Listening and communication techniques, such as negotiation and mediation;
b. Involving the person in regaining control and encouraging self-calming behaviors; 
c. Separation of individuals involved in an altercation;
d. Offering a voluntary escort to guide the person to a safe location;
e. Time out to allow the person to calm down; and
f. Other non-restrictive ways of de-escalating and reducing episodes of aggressive and out-of-control behavior.
Interventions Which Are Prohibited

The following interventions are prohibited:
a.  Corporal punishment of any kind.
b.  Behavioral control methods that interfere with the child’s right to humane care.
c. Depriving a child of the components of humane care.
                d. Depriving the child of necessary services. 
                e. Use of medication in an amount or frequency other than that which has been prescribed by a physician or psychiatrist;
f. Giving medications that have been prescribed for another person;
g. Physically locking doors or windows in a way that would prohibit a child from exiting
h. Physical restraints and techniques of any kind in which restrict breathing;
i. Physical restraints and techniques of any kind that inflict pain as a strategy for behavior control;
j. Mechanical restraints and techniques of any kind used as a punishment.
k. Any activity that interferes with the child’s basic right to humane care, protection, safety and security.
Situations Where This Guideline May Not Apply
Some examples of appropriate adult interventions are listed below:
a. Intervening physically to ensure safety when a child demonstrates dangerous, impulsive behavior. (Example of this is physically holding a three-year-old child who has suddenly tried to dart into the street.)
b. Intervening physically to remove a child from a situation that is so stimulating the child is overwhelmed.
c. Appropriately using standard, industry approved infant and child safety restraints.
If you have any questions regarding Our Kids Behavior Support and Management Policy, please contact your Full Case Management Agency (FCMA) personnel of you may call the Our Kids Administrative office at (305) 455-2857.