Treating deaf children with severe emotional and behavior problems, especially in residential and alternative school treatment settings, is a demanding undertaking. Finding and retaining skilled mental health paraprofessionals are continual challenges faced by mental health service providers. These challenges are even greater when the children served are deaf, and when staff members are expected to be multilingual, be knowledgeable about deaf culture, and be able to treat children with a multitude of severe mental health disturbances. Staff members face the dilemma of both raising and treating children in the same setting with limited resources. Limited funding and limited service models encourage the practice of hiring staff members with minimal skill requirements, at low-end payrates, and with little support or training. This article (a) identifies the issues which threaten the delivery of quality treatment for deaf children with severe emotional and behavioral problems; (b) describes the process that changes well-meaning staff into casualties of their work, and (c) makes recommendations for mental health service administrators, supervisors and agencies to help create and strengthen their therapeutic system.
Mason, A., Mason, M., & Braxton, E. T. (2019). Creating and Strengthening the Therapeutic System for Treatment Setting Serving Deaf Children. JADARA, 37(2). Retrieved from https://nsuworks.nova.edu/jadara/vol37/iss2/4