Residential youth care settings should provide youth with safe environments where they are supported and treated. However, there are aspects of residential youth care that threaten its effectiveness, and which may also violate children’s rights. Staff members exercise power over the youth, which can be abused to coerce, punish, or limit the autonomy of youth. Currently, the harmful behavior of staff includes repression through such acts as harsh and unfair control, punishment, and lack of autonomy granting. However, research on the exact nature of repression is lacking, which hampers empirical research on repression in residential youth care, and makes it difficult for residential settings to recognize repression and take the right corrective measures. A scoping review of the available literature is conducted from a humanistic, social psychological, and organizational perspective to examine the nature of repression and to provide a valid definition and its antecedents. This article offers implications for preventing, recognizing, and diminishing repression in residential youth care.