Battle of the Bills in Florida Forced Drugging vs. Informed Consent for Parents

April 15th, 2005 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 The issue of psychiatric drugs and children is once again being challenged. The Nation has its eyes on Florida , where there are two bills that define the legal debate behind behavioral modification drugs used on children. This debate involves full informed consent and the right to refuse psychiatric “treatment.” Senate Bill 1090 “Relating to Minors/Psychotropic Medication” is aimed at allowing the State of Florida to give a Judge the ability to determine which child receives psychotropic “medication” and which child does not. In contrast, Senate Bill 1766 “Relating to School Students/Psychotropic Medication” would ensure informed consent and the constitutional right to refuse psychiatric “treatment.” Overall this bill would protect the rights of the child and the family.

Senate Bill 1090’s overall goal is to rip the informed consent away from the parent and family and exploit the most vulnerable population of children, those in State Care. This bill also allows for a judge to over-rule the parent’s consent if that parent declines psychiatric “treatment” for their child.

Senate Bill 1766 supports a parent’s right to full disclosure that must include the fact that there is no medical test for a psychiatric disorder, and that the child’s behaviors could be the result of underlying physical conditions. This would safeguard the vital interests of children and would provide critical information to parents and caregivers, and their ability to make an informed decision regarding the health and safety of their children.

Florida has entered the battle zone. The rest of the nation will watch as basic human rights are on the line. Now we wait for the people to speak.

Which bill will prevail?

For more information on how you can help protect children and their constitutional rights visit us at www.ablechild.org.

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