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The NARPA Book
Books of interest and importance
to NARPA members
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of a non-compliant patient by Judi Chamberlin
To Be a Mental
by Rae Unzicker
Mad In America
The Bonkers Institute
Hartford, CT, September 2013
Materials & Handouts
NARPA's 2011 Annual
Materials and handouts
Atlanta, GA, September 2010
Choice Not Force
●Recovery and Peer Run
Beyond the Institutional Setting
2009 Annual Rights Conference:
Phoenix, AZ, September 2009
NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR
RIGHTS PROTECTION AND ADVOCACY
Save The Date!
Call for Proposals
September 3 – 6, 2014
NARPA‘s mission is to promote policies and
pursue strategies that result in individuals with psychiatric diagnoses
making their own choices regarding treatment. We educate and mentor
those individuals to enable them to exercise their legal and human
rights with a goal of abolition of all forced treatment.
NARPA is an independent organization, solely
supported by its members. It is a unique mix of people who have
experienced psychiatric intervention, advocates, civil rights
activists, mental health workers, and lawyers -- with many people whose
roles overlap. NARPA exists to to protect people’s right to choice
and to be free from coercion, and to promote alternatives so that the
right to choice can be meaningful. Read about NARPA's history of human
rights advocacy, check out the ADA Case of the Week archives, and more.
Have You Ever Been
Suicidal? Your Input Is Sought!
the following: renowned mental health lawyer Susan Stefan is “writing a
book about laws and policies around the world relaed to people who are
suicidal, and she wants to hear your experiences. What works? What
doesn’t? What makes things worse? You can help her by taking this short,
And if you’re willing to do an in-depth interview . . . please contact
Susan at email@example.com.
If the survey link has any hiccups, please let her, or us, know.” At the
same time, AttemptSurvivors.com wants to know how you have helped to
shift the conversation about suicide in your community in 2013! Cara
Anna, editor of What Happens Now?, will
share the results in early January 2014. To participate, click here.
Click here for
Materials & Handouts
Line-up of Workshop & Keynote Presentations
View / Print
Click here for conference schedule
amazing victory for mental health treatment reform activists and
Robert Whitaker. On August 28, 2013, National Institute of Mental
Health (NIMH) director, Thomas Insel, announced that
psychiatry’s standard treatment for people diagnosed with
schizophrenia and other psychoses needs to change.
Sign a petition to the U.S. Senate: "Stop Scapegoating people with psychiatric disabilities in gun control
Shock treatment: Ken Kesey hits back
at critics of ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ - In January
1964, Ken Kesey wrote the following letter to the New York Times,
defending the Broadway adaptation of his novel, its cast, and in
particular, responding to the journalists who had criticized the play
for its “unrealistic storyline.”
Are Psychiatric Medications Making Us Sicker?
Several generations of psychotropic drugs have proven to be of little or no benefit, and may be doing considerable harm.
□ Connecticut Supreme Court Holds Lawyers, Conservators Accountable In Probate Cases:
"The ruling has far-reaching implications for our troubled probate court system. It means that a court-appointed lawyer...cannot ignore the wishes of a client."
Robert Whitaker on the New York Times' In Defense of Antidepressants: "... the American public has been treated to yet another dose of misinformation."
a new film chronicling the lives of individuals experiencing mental health issues and extreme states, is now in production. The film examines mainstream mental healthcare and psychiatry in the United States through the lens of individuals at various stages of their mental health story; it explores the stigma of psychiatric diagnoses, the role of trauma, pharmacology, alternatives to the "one-size-fits-all" medical model, and the power of storytelling in recovery. "Healing Voices" is being promoted on the crowd-funding site
here to learn more.
□ NARPA congratulates Disability Rights International Founder and Executive Director, Eric Rosenthal,
recipient of the 2012 Public Service Award from the University of Chicago. Eric is a
long-time rights activist and NARPA supporter.
Making a Killing: Clinical trials have become marketing exercises for Big Pharma -- and cash-strapped universities are helping make the sale
The Sept.-Oct. 2010 issue of Mother Jones sheds light on how drug manufacturers manipulate clinical trials
to make their drugs look good - sometimes at
the expense of
NARPA's statement on the Arizona tragedy
Disability Rights New Jersey
has filed a federal lawsuit regarding the involuntary administration of medication to psychiatric patients in New Jersey's public and private hospitals. The lawsuit alleges that the current procedures, which do not provide for an independent review in the event of a challenge to the need for involuntary medication, violate individual rights and fail to conform to present standards of good clinical practice.
Click here for of the complaint.
Click here for the opinion denying protective order.
Click here for the opinion regarding motion to dismiss.
UN Calls Shock Treatment at Massachusetts School "Torture"
ABC News' report and read
Mental Disability Rights International's full
report on the Judge Rotenberg Center.
Update (May 2011):
Founder and director of Massachusetts “Shock School”
resigns after being indicted on criminal charges. MDRI's Report concludes with an "urgent appeal" to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, demanding the US end the torture of people with disabilities immediately.
And see the Op-ed in the Washington Post, "Disabled children at Mass. school are tortured, not treated" (10/2/10).
Pfizer too big to nail — Federal prosecutors say the world’s largest pharmaceutical company is too big to fail. When Pfizer was caught illegally marketing a drug that was taken off the market, the feds agreed to charge a shell company which exists solely for the purpose of pleading guilty and taking the heat off Pfizer.
A report from CNN's Special Investigations Unit.
Poor Children Likelier to Get Antipsychotics -
New federally financed drug research reveals a stark disparity: children covered by Medicaid are given powerful antipsychotic medicines at a rate four times higher than children whose parents have private insurance. And the Medicaid children are more likely to receive the drugs for less severe conditions than their middle-class counterparts, the data shows.
□ NARPA joins the California Coalition Advocating for Rights, Empowerment and Services (CARES) in opposition to AB 1569, currently pending before the California Assembly Health Committee. AB 1569 would re-authorize involuntary outpatient commitment under AB 1421 ("Laura's law", referred to as "assisted outpatient treatment" by proponents) for six years and would eliminate all state oversight of such programs.
(Click here to download a copy of the CARES letter to the Health Committee Chair.)
Report of the National Council on Disability:
" From Privileges to Rights: People Labeled with
Psychiatric Disabilities Speak for Themselves" -- With a link to the full report as well as
information about how to order a free copy.
(1946 - 2011)
remarkable lawyer, naturalist, and civil rights hero
Confessions of a
New York Times,
Like Us: The Americanization of Mental Illness
years, American ideas about psychiatric disorders have spread around
the globe. Is that really good for the world’s mental health?
this article by Ethan Watters from the New York Times.
essay sharply critical of the psychiatric industry,
the medical journal, The Lancet.
reviews two books: The Myth of the Chemical Cure: A Critique
of Psychiatric Drug Treatment by Joanna Moncrieff and Side
Effects: a Prosecutor, a Whistleblower, and a
Bestselling Antidepressant on Trial by Alison Bass. Read the
Read the NY Daily News story,
County Hospital doctors, nurses facing charges in Esmin Green
death-by-neglect case." And read the NYC Department of
mentally ill patients are rejecting their medication and making the
case for "mad pride" (a May 2009 Newsweek piece on Will Hall and the
"Tremors in the System:
the help you want or the help you get"
- a new 23
minute film by Nora
Jacobson features long time NARPA member and supporter Marj
Berthold and her experiences in the Vermont mental health system.
Big Pharma Gone Wild:
How Risperdal, a drug meant for treating rare
psychiatric disorders, became the seventh best-selling medicine in the
UN: Forced Psychiatric Treatment is Torture
□ FDA proposal to reclassify
electroshock machines - and deem them safe in the absence of scientific
Public comments were due by January 8, 2010.
Learn about the
FDA docket, find out how to view public comments online, and get
additional information here. For background, see "The
FDA’s Regulation of ECT (Shock Treatment): A Beginner (or
Maine's medication law
A new federal lawsuit, filed by the Disability
Rights Center of Maine, challenges the constitutionality of a new law
that allows patients in psychiatric facilities to be medicated against
their will. The lawsuit, which was brought on behalf of an 83 year old
woman, alleges that the law violates due process rights guaranteed by
the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution; The law fails to provide
patients with adequate notice of a hearing or an opportunity to be
heard before being deprived of their liberty. The lawsuit also claims
that patients may be forced to take drugs that can cause death or have
devastating and irreversible side effects, especially in elderly
patients. Read more here.
how the pharmaceutical industry works behind the scenes to shape public
policy and push drugs.
article by Ken Silverstein from
Mother Jones Magazine.
The Needs of People with Psychiatric Disabilities
During and after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: Position Paper and
A report of the National Council on
Disability, prepared and drafted by
and Ann Marshall of NARPA.