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The Restraint Reduction Network Training Standards 2019


“…We feel our son may not have died in vain. If we can make sure this never happens to anyone else, that would be an amazing legacy for Seni.”

Aji and Conrad Lewis, parents of Seni Lewis, who died as a result of prone restraint

The Restraint Reduction Network Training Standards 2019 have been written for training services delivered to education, health and social care services that support people with autism, learning disabilities, dementia and mental health conditions across the UK.

Whilst the UK has many excellent services providing person-centred therapeutic care, there have been too many shocking scandals exposing the unnecessary and inappropriate use of restrictive interventions.

These Standards have been written to put a stop to scandals and improve the lives of service users. But this will not become a reality without the input of people like you. Until now, there has been no quality benchmark setting a standard for training in restrictive interventions. It is vital that we have such quality benchmarks in place and regulation through certification, since restrictive interventions are potentially dangerous and distressing for everyone involved. Find out more about certification and the training standards here.

We all have a role to play in reducing restrictive practices

Commissioned by NHS, the Restraint Reduction Network Training Standards 2019 provide a national and international benchmark for training in supporting people who are distressed in education, health and social care settings.

These Standards will also be mandatory for all training with a restrictive intervention component that is delivered to NHS-commissioned services (England only) for people with mental health conditions, learning disabilities, autistic people and people living with dementia in England. Implementation will be via commissioning requirements and inspection frameworks from April 2020. Find out more about becoming a certificated training provider here.

Professor Tim Kendall, National Clinical Director for Mental Health, NHS England, said: “The NHS welcomes the publication of the Restraint Reduction Network Training Standards. These standards have been written to focus on ensuring training promotes human rights and supports cultural change necessary to reduce reliance on restrictive practices (rather than purely focus on technical skills). Certification of compliance with these standards will be a requirement in NHS commissioned and CQC regulated services from April 2020’

Chair of the Restraint Reduction Network, Professor Joy Duxbury, said: “These Standards are a really exciting development. They are vital in our work to reduce the use of restrictive practices and, on those occasions when restraint is unavoidable, to make sure it is safer and dignified.”

Joy Duxbury, Chair of the Restraint Reduction Network, tells us what the Standards are all about

Iris Benson MBE, Beth Morrison and James Dickinson speak about their experiences of restrictive practices.

Whilst focusing very much on the restraint reduction message this video does include discussion and disclosure of traumatising restraint experiences. Viewer discretion is advised.


 Take a look at the Standards

 Download a copy of the Training Standards here

Key messages about the Standards and certification

Find out more

Information letter about certification of training in restrictive practices

Become a certificated training service

These Standards apply to education, health and social care settings. We encourage training providers working in these sectors to become certified against these Standards. Certification against the the Standards will be mandatory for all training providers (commercial and in-house) working with the NHS from April 2020.

Download the Certification Scheme Handbook

Bild Association of Certified Training is currently the only organisation that certifies training services against the Restraint Reduction Network Training Standards. Find out more

Restraint Reduction Network Audit Tool

Implement the Training Standards with this new tool


Tell us your story

We want to provide a platform for people who have been restrained to tell their stories and inspire positive change in services, organisations and policy.  We also want to provide a space for people who have reduced restrictive practices to share good practice in reducing restrictive interventions and how things have changed as a result. 

Here you can read or watch the stories of others. Whatever your story, we want to hear it.


Patients were restrained 22,000 times in NHS mental health hospitals alone in 2018.

The majority of such restraints are preventable.