Archive for the ‘Drugs and Medication’ Category


Breggin Book Announcement
check out The 2nd/2008 edition of Dr. Peter Breggin’s outstanding Brain-Disabling Treatments in Psychiatry
see this site: – good summary


hardhitting critique by dissident psychologist Bruce Levine

From: “angela bischoff” <>
Date: January 10, 2008 1:28:02 AM EST (CA)
Subject: [can-survive] America’s Love-Hate Relationship with Drugs

America’s Love-Hate Relationship with Drugs

By Bruce E. Levine, AlterNet, January 9, 2008

While Americans are inundated with coverage of the Democrats’ quibbling
over Barack Obama’s use of marijuana and cocaine as a teenager, a truly
important drug story continues to be neglected: The hypocrisy of Big
Pharma, psychiatry officialdom, and justice institutions regarding
mood-altering (psychotropic) drugs — specifically the denial of the
similarity between illegal and psychiatric drugs.

Read full article:

drugging ‘ADHD’ kids – more child abuse, more psychiatric fraud

Drugs for ADHD ‘not the answer’
Treating children who have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder with
drugs is not effective in the long-term, research has shown.
BBC News

A study obtained by the BBC’s Panorama programme says drugs such as
Ritalin and Concerta work no better than therapy after three years of

The findings by an influential US study also suggested long-term use of
the drugs could stunt children’s growth.

It said that the benefits of drugs had previously been exaggerated.

The Multimodal Treatment Study of Children with ADHD has been monitoring
the treatment of 600 children across the US since the 1990s.

Read full article here:

Published: 2007/11/11

Other articles on same topic here:

The full, explosive BBC program, What Next for Craig?, can be seen here:


Scandal of the Alzheimers victims given zombie drugs

More than 100,000 people in Britain suffering from dementia are being
prescribed drugs by doctors and care homes that at best offer few benefits
and at worst are lethal, according to shocking new research.

Read full article here:


Please Look After Dad.

Panorama reveals that anti-psychotic drugs frequently prescribed to treat
dementia patients could shorten their lives and if used over long periods
don’t work.

Professor Clive Ballard is quoted as stating: “There were no benefits in
behaviour and there were clearly deteriorations in some of the core


Prescription Abuse Seen In U.S. Nursing Homes Powerful Antipsychotics Used
to Subdue Elderly;
Huge Medicaid Expense
December 4, 2007; Page A1

In recent years, Medicaid has spent more money on antipsychotic drugs for
Americans than on any other class of pharmaceuticals — including
antibiotics, AIDS drugs or medicine to treat high-blood pressure.

One reason: Nursing homes across the U.S. are giving these drugs to
elderly patients to quiet symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms
of dementia.

Nearly 30% of the total nursing-home population is receiving antipsychotic
drugs, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, known as
CMS. In a practice known as “off label” use of prescription drugs,
patients can get these powerful medicines whether they are psychotic or
not. CMS says nearly 21% of nursing-home patients who don’t have a
psychosis diagnosis are on antipsychotic drugs.

Read full article here:


For those who followed the Healthy Mind Body Planet Tour I did in 2006, or
anyone interested in mental and general health issues, please take time to
listen and watch our latest podcasts, produced by Kelly Reinhardt of

Toronto talk therapy:
“I’m not depressed, I’m just feeling what’s going on on the earth.
Their destroying the earth, humanity and all the animals. If you
don’t feel that, you’re numbed out.”
boilingfrog note: for me, those words and the manner they were spoke
is the most memorable from the entire tour

Kingston conversations:
People of Kingston, Ontario share their experiences with mental
illness, pharmaceuticals and their alternatives.

Alan Cassels, co-author of ‘Selling Sickness’:
interview with Alan Cassels, co-author of ‘Selling Sickness: How the
World’s Biggest Pharmaceutical Companies Are Turning Us All into

Critical Dialogue with Ghislaine Lanctôt:
Ghislaine Lanctôt was a Medical Doctor that came to understand the
real inner workings of the health industry. In this podcast she
shares her views on how to obtain true health.

Dr. Joel Lexchin interview
The scope of drug industry influence on doctors and the efficacy of
anti-depressants vs. placebo in treating depression

Dr. Abram Hoffer interview
From his office at the Orthomolecular Vitamin Information Centre Dr.
Hoffer explains how orthomolecular medicine began, its successes and the
opposition to it from the medical establishment.


Drug to stop smoking questioned
A pill to help people stop smoking is under the spotlight amid reports
that it can generate suicidal feelings.
Published: 2007/11/27 17:33:16 GMT


FDA: Flu drugs affecting kids’ behavior

Sat. Nov 24, 2:36 AM ET

Government health regulators recommended adding label precautions about
neurological problems seen in children who have taken flu drugs made by
Roche and GlaxoSmithKline.


“We’ll Take Care of You” is the title of an award winning documentary film
(2007 Color 73 min).

The film illustrates, step by step, how Big Pharma orchestrates the
approval, marketing, and sales of killer drugs.

The Vioxx scandal serves here as an example for the business model of drug

The Film won “2007 Best Documentary” at two prominent film festivals, one
in the UK (Swansea International Film Festival) and one in the Usa (Long
Island International Film Expo).

The British Medical Journal, the leading medical publication worldwide,
described as “really interesting”.

If you are taking prescription drugs you should see this compelling
documentary, or else… you may be the next victim of drug company greed.

More information on this eye opening documentary can be found at:


Eulogies for Tooker and Stories for a
healthy mind, body and planet
Join our email list by emailing us at:
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and tell us what city/country you live in

Psychiatric Drugs and Informed Consent- An Antipsychiatry Perspective

Psychiatric Drugs and Informed Consent – An Antipsychiatry Perspective
by Don Weitz
(Note: This article may not be republished without permission of the author.)

Ontario’s recent “Mental Health Week” (October 3-10) was just another sham. Mental health campaigns are not so much about informing and helping people in crisis or preventing crises, but a public relations exercise by and for the Canadian Mental Health Association. The CMHA is no friend of psychiatric survivors, antipsychiatry and social justice activists, mainly because it promotes psychiatry’s biomedical model of “mental illness”/”mental health” – including “medication” (psychiatric drugs), and the repressive “community treatment orders” which authorize outpatient forced drugging and other methods of social control masquerading as “treatment”.

I’m not only critical of CMHA but psychiatry and government because of their consistent failure to expose and investigate the epidemic of misinformation or lack of information about psychiatric drugs. I’m also critical of Big Pharma – the transnational drug industry. Big Pharma ceos and their media reps, in collusion with officials in government regulatory agencies such as Health Canada and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States) and the medical profession, have repeatedly lied to the public about the alleged safety and effectiveness of the antidepressants and neuroleptics (“antipsychotics”). Big Pharma continues to produce false and misleading media ads that extol the safety and effectiveness of these drugs with little or no scientific evidence of safety and effectiveness – virtually no information about their long-term effects. Profit – not public safety – is its bottom line. With the support of Health Canada and the FDA, Big Phamra has generally denied public access to the results of their clinical trials. More cover-ups.

For example, take the antidepressant Paxil. GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), manufacturer of Paxil, deceived the public for many years by withholding critical information in its ads – namely that Paxil can cause withdrawal (“discontinuance syndrome”), a clear sign of addiction. Until recently, GSK also denied Paxil’s alarming ability to trigger suicidal ideas and suicide attempts, which it covered up for approximately twenty years. In recent class-action lawsuits in the United States and United Kingdom, GSK was ordered to pay out billions of dollars to patients who had suffered severe withdrawal effects of Paxil. In Canada, a similar class-action-lawsuit is in the works.

While lawsuits expose Big Pharma’s unethical or illegal drug practices, this is small comfort to surviving relatives of people who killed themselves or others while on these “safe and effective” drugs. Widely-respected environmental activist Tooker Gomberg jumped to his death in Halifax in the spring of 2003, a few weeks after being prescribed the antidepressant Remeron (mirtazapine). Like many other doctors, Tooker’s psychiatrist failed to inform him about the suicide risk and other “side effects” of Remeron. Angela Bischoff, Tooker’s partner and an equally respected environmental activist, is currently speaking out about the many risks of the antidepressants and criticizing the medical profession, transnational drug companies, and Health Canada for their insufficient or misleading information about antidepressant drug risks, their lack of accountability and cover-ups.

Consider the horrific murder-suicide case of Joseph Wesbecker, as reported by psychiatrist Peter Breggin in his1994 book Talking Back to Prozac. Sixteen years ago in Louisville, Kentucky, Wesbecker underwent a dramatic personality change. He became suddenly threatening and violent 4-5 weeks after taking Prozac. On one day armed with an AK-47 rifle, Wesbecker burst into his workplace, killed 8 workers and injured 12 others, then killed himself. Eli Lilly, manufacturer of Prozac and the neuroleptic Zyprexa (olanzapine) which can cause diabetes, denied a cause-effect relationship. The1991 edition of the Physicians’ Desk Reference (US doctors’ drug bible) barely mentions that cases of “suicidal ideation” and ”violent behavior” have been reported. However, during the last few years including 2005, the Compendium of Pharmaceuticals and Specialties (Canadian doctors’ drug bible) clearly warns that recent clinical trials show that Paxil and other SSRI-antidepressants can cause “ severe agitation… self harm…, suicidal ideation or other indicators of potential for suicidal behaviour in patients of all ages.” Despite these alarming findings, Paxil has not been banned in Canada. However, Paxil has recently been banned in the US and UK for children 18 years and under.

Nevertheless, psychiatrists and other physicians generally do not inform their patients about the possibility of suicide, violence, sudden death, and other serious risks of the antidepressants and neuroleptics – partly because of their indoctrination into the biomedical model, partly because of their obsession to enforce ”medication compliance”. During the last twenty-five years in Toronto, I’ve talked with and listened to many survivors about what doctors have told and especially not told them about psychiatric drugs. When I’ve asked survivors, “Did your doctor ever mention or warn you about any risks or alternatives…?”, the vast majority answered no. In short, psychiatric survivors, particularly people locked up in coercive and intimidating psychiatric wards, are kept ignorant about many serious “side effects of medication”. In Toronto, I’ve heard of only one or two doctors willing to help survivors withdraw safely and gradually. Despite their denials, many drug-pushing doctors are causing drug dependency or addiction in many patients, which is not only unethical but constitutes medical malpractice.

Health Canada – particularly its Therapeutic Products Directorate (TPD) – also deserves criticism. Despite the well-known health-and-life-threatening effects of Paxil and similar SSRI-antidepressants such as Prozac, Zoloft, and Effexor, TPD refuses to ban or tightly restrict their use. Instead, it issues “advisories”, which are weakly-worded notices to doctors and pharmacists informing them about serious risks of a few antidepressants and other drugs and simply asking them to be careful when prescribing these hi-risks drugs. – especially to children and the elderly. Health Canada’s “advisories” are unenforceable since they include no order to comply; this means doctors are free to ignore them and prescribe Paxil and other hi-risk psychiatric drugs to children and elderly patients – the most vulnerable. At the very least, serious and enforceable warnings, such as “black box labels” sometimes issued in the United States, should replace the “advisories”.

Also, consider the serious health risks of neuroleptics (*antipsychotics”), which are as dangerous as the antidepressants . Both classes of drugs target and damage the brain’s emotional centre (limbic system) as well as powerful neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine. For over twenty years until the late 1980s, psychiatrists failed to inform patients about tardive dyskinesia (TD)-, a serious neurological disorder, despite the fact that TD and its serious health risks were well-publicized in medical and psychiatric journals – including the Archives of General Psychiatry and the American Journal of Psychiatry. TD is a disfiguring, painful and generally permanent neurological disorder caused by virtually all of the 20+ neuroleptics such as Haldol (haloperidol), Risperdal (risperidone), and Zyprexa (olanzapine). According to various studies, if you’re under 50 years old and prescribed a neuroleptic, you stand a 10%-25% chance of developing TD within 1 or 2 years. if you’re 60 years and over your chances are 40%-50%. Neuroleptics have also caused the frequently fatal neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) and sudden death. NMS is characterized by high fever, delirium, “lead pipe rigidity” in some muscles and other serious effects. It also causes death. A number of published studies show that the fatality rate of NMS is approximately 25%. About 12 years ago, a close friend almost died from NMS while on Haldol at Queen Street Mental Health Centre (now CAMH). Based on the widely recognized prevalence rate of 2%-3%, my guesstimate is that well over 4000 Canadians have TD and over 1000 have died from this drug-induced disorder. Although Health Canada recently banned Mellaril, (thioridazine), it has never banned other equally dangerous, brain-damaging neuroleptics such as Thorazine (chlorpromazine), Haldol (haloperidol), Clozaril (clozapine), Risperdal (risperidone) and Zyprexa (olanzapine) It should.

To protect the public, government banning of hi-risk, harmful drugs is essential. Equally essential is public health education –such as government-sponsored public hearings on psychiatric drugs. To date in Canada, neither the provincial governments nor the federal government have held public hearings on the risks of and alternatives to psychiatric drugs. Given this appalling and shameful fact, the Coalition Against Psychiatric Assault (CAPA) took action in April 2005 by sponsoring two days of public hearings (“Inquiry Into Psychiatry”) in Toronto City Hall. These hearings were unique and historic in three respects. First, the decision to develop a strategy of resistance to psychiatric drugs was the direct result of a public and democratic process one year earlier – all the people at a public meeting in City Hall voted to direct CAPA to make psychiatric drugs and electroshock (ECT) its two priorities. Second, an independent panel of academics and health professionals facilitated the testimony. Third, only psychiatric survivors who have experienced psychiatric drugs were allowed to testify. The personal testimonies of over twenty-five of these courageous survivors were riveting, frequently alarming. They exposed and criticized many harmful effects of the drugs including memory loss, brain damage, and trauma, as well as several human rights violations including forced drugging and lack of informed consent. Survivor testimonies and a hard-hitting report of the drug are posted on the CAPA website, click on ”Inquiry into Psychiatry” or ”Personal Narratives”.

The Hippocratic Oath orders all physicians “First, do no harm”. However, many doctors have violated and continue to violate this Oath, as well as the ethical principle and legal right to informed consent, whenever they prescribe hi-risk psychiatric drugs and fail to inform patients about their many risks and alternatives. Similarly, although governments and the medical profession proclaim principles and laws affirming the public’s right to be fully informed and access health information, they violate these principles and laws whenever their officials refuse to hold public hearings on psychiatric drugs and withhold basic information from patients and the public. It’s time to pressure governments, including Health Canada, and the medical profession to stop these violations and start educating us about psychiatric drugs and their life-threatening “side effects.”

At the same time, psychiatric survivors can and should educate themselves, government health officials, and the public about safe and humane non-medical alternatives to the drugs–self-help groups, withdrawal centres, affordable and supportive housing, nutritious diet and exercise, and a liveable wage. All can help, heal and empower.

Recommended Reading:
Peter R. Breggin. Brain-Disabling Treatments in Psychiatry (NewYork: Springer Publishing Company, 1997)

Bonnie Burstow and Don Weitz. Psychiatric Drugs – A Public Health Hazard. A brief presented on behalf of Resistance Against Psychiatry (RAP) to the Toronto Board of Health, May 30, 1990 [unpublished].

Leonard Roy Frank. “A Prescription for Diabetes, Disease and Early Death”,
Street Spirit, vol.11 no.8, August 2005.

Report of the Psychiatric Drugs Panel. Toronto: Inquiry Into Psychiatry 2005
Biographical note: Don Weitz is an antipsychiatry activist, co-founder of the Coalition Against Psychiatric Assault, and host-producer of “Antipsychiatry Radio” on CKLN in Toronto.

Another survivor dead from heat & drugs

From Canadian Press: Suzanne Young, Sarnia; died from heat

Heat victim couldn’t afford AC fee

SARNIA — Neighbours say a mentally ill woman found dead in her sweltering apartment couldn’t afford air conditioning.
Police cited excessively hot temperatures in Suzanne Young’s apartment as a possible factor in the 49-year-old’s death. “It is possible that the heat contributed to her death,” said coroner Dr. David Eden. He added there was no reason to suspect foul play. Young was found in her bed on the weekend by a neighbour who became concerned after not seeing her take her usual morning walk. “We were all wondering where she went because the last day we saw her was Thursday,” said Timothy Duquette, who lives in the area. Shanna MacDonald, who adopted Young’s 15-year-old daughter as a child, said Young was on medication for mental illness, including schizophrenia. Friends said Young was living on social assistance and cleaned up the parking lots at two local coffee and convenience stores for extra money. Because of her fixed income, Young could not afford the $50 monthly fee charged by her landlord to cover electricity costs of a window air conditioner, said her friend Jane McNevan.

HORRIBLE AND INEXCUSABLE – another state-sanctioned crime of neglect/indifference/discrimination against poor women & psychiatric survivors like Suzanne Young

– Don Weitz

Bombarded by Drugs Video Now Posted

“You’ll have to excuse any lapses in memory I might experience, since I was only a child of six or seven when my experiences with psychiatric drugs began.”

The second video from the April 2005 hearings, Inquiry into Psychiatry, is now posted. Like the ECT Report video, this video also portrays moving and disturbing testimony from survivors of psychiatric medications. This is a difficult video to watch because the brave individuals who came forward to testify (and agreed to have their testimony recorded on video) lay bare very personal details of their lives that led to them being “bombarded by drugs,” rather than receiving other forms of support and therapy that would have been more appropriate. Particularly egregious examples are the multiple reports of people who were severely medicated as children or teenagers, rather than being rescued from severe physical, emotional, and sexual abuse at home and in school.

If anything, these heart-rending stories remind us of the danger of solutions looking for problems. With today’s growing arsenal of psychotropic medications, marketed heavily by the pharmaceutical industry, it is all too easy and tempting for physicians to turn to masking symptoms or controlling behaviours through chemical interventions, rather than helping an individual with underlying causes of personal turmoil.

Watch the video, and think carefully about the effects of being Bombarded by Drugs.

Paxil and Zyprexa health risks and coverups – 2 articles

Antipsychotic Drugs Cause Rapid Weight Gain, Abnormal Eating Behavior

by David Gutierrez

(Originally published here March 5 2007)

Researchers may have discovered why certain antipsychotic medications, such as those used to treat schizophrenia, lead to extreme weight gain. A study published in the “Proceedings of the National Academy Of Sciences” suggests that these drugs increase the activity of the enzyme AMPK in the parts of the brain that regulate eating behavior.

Patients taking the antipsychotic drugs olanzapine (sold under the brand name Zyprexa by Eli Lilly and Co.) and clozapine (sold as Clorazil by Novartis AG) have been known to gain so much weight that they are placed at increased risk for obesity-related disorders such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

“Their use has been hampered primarily by the fact that for some of them there is this horrible gain, largely due to just eating too much from increased appetite,” said Dr. Solomon Snyder, a professor of neuroscience at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, where the study was based.

“It’s a big increase and it occurs with very little doses of the drug,” he said.

The results of the study, which involved experimentation on mice, suggest that the antipsychotics interfere with the protein histamine, leading to an increase in AMPK activity. Histamine is an important actor in local immune responses — including allergy symptoms — that has long been suspected to play a role in controlling weight.

Snyder expressed hope that the new study’s findings could aid in the development of  antipsychotic drugs to do not lead to weight gain.

“Unfortunately, Zyprexa, which everybody agrees is the best therapeutic agent, gives the worst weight gain, along with clozapine, the parent drug in the class,” he said.

But consumer advocate Mike Adams, author of “How to Halt Diabetes in 25 Days,” instead took the results as a sign of the inherent risks of psychiatric drugs.

“We’ve known for a long time that antipsychotic drugs cause severe blood sugar imbalances and even increase the risk of diabetes,” Adams said

“Now scientists are pinpointing the biochemical mechanism by which these drugs cause massive weight gain, an average of 22 pounds in the first year. That’s enough to make anyone depressed — which, of course, often leads to stronger, more dangerous drugs being prescribed. As a result, antipsychotic drugs actually create their own repeat revenue by keeping patients depressed and overweight.”


Britain’s Largest Pharmaceutical Company Concealed Clinical Test Results That Suggested Paxil Unsafe, Says BBC

by Beau Hodai

(Originally published here January 31 2007)

The BBC television series Panorama accused pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline this week of covering test results that link the antidepressant, Paxil, with increased suicidal tendencies in teens.

Paxil, Seroxat or Paroxetine, as the drug is generically known, is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), and has been available on the U.S. market since 1992. Paxil was once GSK’s most profitable product- grossing $1.9 billion in 2005 alone.

In 2004, GSK was faced with numerous class-action lawsuits in the both Europe and the United States on behalf of parents and children who claimed that the pharmaceutical company covered up evidence from clinical trials that suggested that Paxil was ineffective and even unsafe for juvenile use.

An internal document leaked earlier that year revealed that GSK had been warned about the potential ill effects of the drug’s application to children. The company was advised that it would be “commercially unacceptable” to release the data because it could “undermine the profile” of the drug.

As a result of a lawsuit filed by New York Attorney General Elliot Spitzer, GSK agreed to release all clinical data pertaining to the antidepressant and pay $2.5 million in restitution.

Panorama also claimed that GSK utilized ghostwriters to skew the reports of ‘independent’ academics.

Child psychiatrist Dr. Neal Ryan of the University of Pittsburgh, was one such ghostwriter employed by GSK. Study 329 was one of several studies conducted on Paxil between 1993 and 2003. Dr. Ryan was one of the co-authors of the study.

Study 329 revealed that, out of 190 patients between the ages of 12 and 18 years, 11 children on Paxil displayed elements of suicidal behavior, versus only two on placebo.

“Even when they have negative studies that show that this drug Seroxat is going to harm some kids they still spin that study as remarkably effective and safe for children,” said Karen Barth Menzies, a partner in the law firm of Baum Hedlund, representing several families in a U.S. class action lawsuit against GSK.

Menzies provided legal council, pro bono, to Christopher Pittman, who, in 2005 at age 12, killed both of his grandparents while under the influence of Zoloft (Sertaline, manufactured by Pfizer), another SSRI antidepressant.

“Originally we had planned to do extensive media relations surrounding this study until we actually viewed the results,” read an internal GSK email discovered amongst the thousands of documents released by GSK pursuant to the 2004 Spitzer settlement. “Essentially, the study did not really show it was effective in treating adolescent depression, which is not something we want to publicize,” said the email.

In a press release Monday, GSK said: “In developing Seroxat, GSK has always been strongly conscious of the duty it owes to the millions of patients, including those under the age of 18, who suffer from depression and we refute any allegation that we have failed in this duty.

“GSK utterly rejects any suggestion that it has improperly withheld drug trial information. Results from its pediatrics studies were documented and submitted to regulators in accordance with regulatory requirements.”

“This kind of scientific fraud is routine,” said Mike Adams, author of “Natural Health Solutions.”

“Drug companies engage in censorship, bribery, corruption, fraud, suppression of negative studies and all varieties of unscrupulous tactics to prevent the public from knowing the truth. I’ve documented numerous examples in my book that show both drug companies and the FDA engaging in deliberate scientific fraud,” said Adams.

Drugging Ontario’s Kids- Letter to Globe and Mail

June 14, 2007

Letters Editor
The Globe and Mail

Dear Editor –
Your informative article re the drugging of children under the “care” of Ontario Children’s Aid Societies is another shameful and disturbing example of psychiatry-and-state sanctioned child abuse (“Nearly half of children in Crown care are medicated”, June 9). No doubt tens of thousands of other children in Ontario and other provinces are being drugged with the super dangerous stimulant Ritalin and other addictive psychiatric drugs after they’ve been labeled with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity disorder (‘ADHD’) – another so-called “mental disorder” exposed as a fraud by pediatric neurologist Fred Baughman Jr. – and other pseudo-medical diagnoses For authoritative information re the devastating effects of psychiatric drugs on children, I urge readers and child advocates to read these consciousness-raising books: Your Drug May Be Your Problem (1999) by psychiatrist Peter Breggin and social scientist-researcher David Cohen, and The War Against Children (1994) by Dr. Breggin and Ginger Ross Breggin (1994).
Don Weitz

Drugged Children – An expedient answer to a government’s problem

Saturday’s Globe and Mail has a shocking article about how the provincial government sanctions the over-medication of children who are wards of the Crown.

Psychotropic drugs are being prescribed to nearly half the Crown wards in a sample of Ontario children’s aid societies, kindling fears that the agencies are overusing medication with the province’s most vulnerable children.

“These children have lots of issues and the quickest and easiest way to deal with it is to put them on medication, but it doesn’t really deal with the issues,” said child psychiatrist Dick Meen, clinical director of Kinark Child and Family Services, the largest children’s mental health agency in Ontario.

Children who are removed from parental care under court order typically have to deal with a wide range of psycho-social issues that all too often manifest as behavioural problems. Rather than giving them the support they need to deal with the trauma of removal – let alone the traumas that spurred the removal order in the first place, assuming it was truly justified – government-sanctioned workers turn to controlling medications instead. The article goes on:

 “There are lots of other kids like that,” said Dr. McKay, one of the experts on the government panel. “If you look at the group homes, it’s close to 100 per cent of the kids who are on not just one drug, but on drug cocktails with multiple diagnoses.

“There are too many kids being diagnosed with…a whole range of disorders that are way out of proportion to the normal population. …It’s just not reasonable to think the children in care would have such over-representation in these rather obscure disorders.”

The report from a government investigation into the case obtained by The Globe uncovered group home staff untrained in the use and side effects of the psychotropic drugs they were doling out; no requests from the psychiatrist to monitor the boy for problems, and little evidence of efforts to treat the boy’s apparent mental-health issues other than with heavy-duty pharmaceuticals.

There needs to be a complete moratorium on prescribing such medications for children, together with calling a public inquiry into the over-medication of children in care, the over-medication of children because of teacher/school pressure, and the problematic of completely inadequate oversight of Children’s Aid Societies and their workers throughout this province. For once, won’t someone in power truly think of the children who have none.

New Anti-Psychiatry Blog

A new blog has just been started in advance of the upcoming World Congress of Psychiatry in Dresden, Germany. The basic position taken by the “Outlaw Psychiatry Now!” blog is, “psychiatry is a tool for oppression used against ordinary people under the cover of “Medical Specialty” to secure and perpetuate the rule of big business.” Among many other things, the blog recalls the verdict of the Foucault trial on the state of psychiatry that was held 9 years ago in Berlin:

Psychiatry cannot pretend to the art of healing, having violated the Hippocratic Oath through a conscious use of harmful drugs, which caused in particular the world wide epidemic of tardive dyskinesia, as well as other interventions which we recognize as tortures: involuntary confinement, forced drugging, four point restraints, electroshock, all forms of psychosurgery and outpatient commitment.

Much more is on the blog, including testimony, activism and advocacy.