GCN Power House Radio Interview with AbleChild on Monday, July 2, 2018

Power Hour Radio with Dr. Joanne Conaway on Monday July 2, 2018 from 9:00 am to 11:00 am eastern time will interview AbleChild.org Cofounder, Sheila Matthews, on the mission of Ablechild.

Below are links to the upcoming interview or to use to retrieve the archive of the interview:

GCNLive

To Listen Live

Archives

Power Hour Radio

Dr. Joanne Conaway

Is Parkland Accused Murderer, Nikolas Cruz, Deserving of a Fair Trial?

May 12th, 2018 | Breaking News, Press Releases

 

Attorney Ostrow stated, “from the onset, Broward’s public defender office, has consistently, thrown their client under the bus in public comments made by Howard Finkelstein, essentially condemning his own client, reflecting a clear conflict of interest and an unfitness to effectively represent Cruz’s best interests. Despite this issue being addressed in various motions filed with the court, based on a host of supporting facts, the court has rejected any such arguments to date, citing a lack of standing, as opposed to the merits of the argument.”

He stood mute at the arraignment while the Court entered a Not Guilty Plea on his behalf. Nikolas Cruz appeared with his head down, the result of reportedly being heavily drugged. Cruz had been a patient of Henderson Behavioral Health, a contracted mental health vendor of Broward County that received $8.9 million in federal grants two distributions, one in October 2012 and the other in December of 2016.

Nikolas Cruz, a product of the Department of Children and Family Services (DCF), was labeled with a string of alleged mental disorders, including depression, ADHD, emotional behavioral disability and autism and was, apparently “treated.”

It has been reported that he had been medicated throughout his young life, but how much or which psychiatric, mind-altering drugs appears to be the only selective mental health records that were not leaked by the Mayor of Broward County, Beam Furr.

Given the complete subjectivity associated with psychiatric diagnosing, it is of little surprise that the mental health wizards of Henderson Behavioral Health reported to DCF that Cruz was not a risk to harm himself or others.

A grand jury formally indicted Cruz on 34 counts, including and 17 counts of premeditated first-degree murder and 17 counts of attempted first-degree murder in the injuries to 17 others – charges that make Cruz a prime candidate for the death penalty.

Long-time Broward County attorney, Howard Finkelstein heads up the Public Defender’s Office charged with handling his defense. In February of 2018, Finkelstein’s suspect remarks about his client were featured in the New York Times article Feb. 24, 2018, After a School Shooting, a Question of One More Death: The Gunman.  It raised serious questions about Cruz’s ability to get appropriate representation and a fair trial: It reads:

“If it were my daughter, I would want to personally kill my client, make no mistake about it.”


Guilty or innocent, there is a time and a place for everything and, certainly, Finkelstein is entitled to his own opinion. But when it appears that the Chief of the Public Defender’s Office is throwing you under the bus in the New York Times, and your life is on the line, maybe it is time to seek a more sympathetic attorney.  Unfortunately, Cruz has been denied this ability. The accused, Cruz, is incarcerated in Broward County Jail and, apparently, heavily drugged and on suicide watch.

In this regard, attempts made by a local criminal defense attorney, Gary Ostrow, to assist Cruz have been blocked by the Public Defender’s office.

(Gary Ostrow has almost exclusively practiced criminal law for over 30 years and tried hundreds of cases from South Florida to New York and Los Angeles and has many published blog articles relating to his trial experiences as well his relentless advocacy for those who cannot speak for themselves and the oppressed.)

Maybe people are no longer innocent until proven guilty. Additionally, it appears that Gordon Weeks, Chief Assistant to the Public Defender, is more concerned with sparing the community of having to relive the shooting, rather than providing a thorough a defense.

Perhaps a trial would actually help the community to discover material facts as to what caused the young man to carry out such a heinous act. The information gleaned from a trial may not only prevent another school shooting, but could also help stop the mental health vendors from drugging children with mind-altering drugs and rubber stamping them as “treated.”

Facts have a way of coming out during a trial. Cruz needs a fair shake and let the chips fall where they may. But, in order to do so, the drugging of the accused must stop. He deserves responsible legal representation and the opportunity to enter his own plea.

Short of providing new council, it appears that we are going down the same path, with too many unnecessary deaths and another child involved in the mental health system that provides “cradle to grave” drugging.

 

AbleChild Attends Sandy Hook Psychiatrist’s Pre-Trial

July 28th, 2016 | Breaking News, Press Releases

July 26, 2016, Danbury, Connecticut Criminal Court, Paul Fox, is the last known treating psychiatrist of Adam and is facing criminal charges for multiple counts of sexual assault of a former patient. Beyond these charges, Fox could offer much needed information in the Sandy Hook investigation.

As is well known, Fox’s mental health assessment was incorporated into the final report that the State Attorney, Stephen Sedensky, used to prepare the final report on Sandy Hook, and Fox’s psychiatric assessment and treatment of Lanza was used in the mainstream media to profile Lanza and address the motive of the crime.

Sedensky, who released the final report that determined Adam Lanza acted alone in the Sandy Hook massacre, is prosecuting the Fox case and has an opportunity to provide to the public much needed mental health information from Fox.

AbleChild contacted Sedensky regarding the police investigation conducted in the aftermath of Sandy Hook to inquiry about the key mental health records Fox claimed he destroyed two years too early, which is now known to be in violation of Connecticut law along with Fox’s failure to notify current and former patients he was discontinuing his practice.

The internal investigation conducted by the public health department, that prompted Fox to surrender his license, also was discussed with Sedensky. Since AbleChild’s inquiry, the former patient involved in the “internal” inquiry of Fox has come forward and Sedensky now is taking action against Fox.

However, one must ask Sedensky, why did he avoid the questions relating to the quality, methods, and ethics of the mental health treatment Lanza received under Fox while preparing his final report on Lanza? Why was this important information missing from his report?

The investigation conducted by the Connecticut State Police, and reviewed by multiple state agencies, led to the Governor appointing the Sandy Hook Advisory Commission to review the findings and make legislative recommendations.

Connecticut State Police detectives investigating Lanza’s mental health history first became aware of Fox’s relationship with the female patient for which Fox now has been charged with sexual assault. This information was held by the state agency on public health. Why, when public policy PA 13-3 was being rush through the State Legislature to increase mental health and pass sweeping gun control, was this information not share by the state agency with legislators?

Fox and his attorney brokered a deal with the State Department of Public Health’s Healthcare Quality and Safety branch, allowing the psychiatrist to surrender his license in Connecticut and New York.

The Sandy Hook police investigation would lead investigators to contact the “relocated” psychiatrist, in New Zealand, to inquire about the medical records of Adam Lanza.

According to the police investigation, Fox told the investigators he had the medical billing records for Lanza stored in the US, the next day when investigators called Fox back to obtain more information, Fox indicated he destroyed the medical records. So, does Fox still have the billing records? Why didn’t the State charge Fox for destroying the records 2 years too early according to Connecticut Law? Also, Fox had an obligation to notify his current and former patients he was discontinuing his practice. Why didn’t the State hold him responsible for the failure to follow that law?

While this case appears to compel the State to prosecute the already investigated internal sexual assault case, it does nothing to get to the mental health treatments provided to Adam Lanza.

Additionally, the years-in-the-making Child Advocate’s report appears to be an attempt to clear Fox of answering any questions relating to his treatment of Lanza and his relationship to Nancy Lanza and the Yale Child Study Center.

The Sandy Hook Commission, appointed by the Governor, also appears to have given a pass to Fox. No one from the State of Connecticut appears to want to consider the billing records that Fox claims are stored in the United States and may yield insight into the motive for Lanza’s behavior.

Even the small town newspaper, The Newtown Bee appears to cover news stories relating to Sandy Hook that seeks legislation regarding gun control, rather than covering news seeking legislation addressing whether the mental health treatment Lanza received was adequate or even necessary.

One would expect the news organization to provide accurate information about mental health records and facts surrounding the treatment of Lanza that apparently led to the massacre in its community.

The reporting on the fact that Adam Lanza was unable to attended school because of his deteriorating psychiatric condition as determined by Fox, but at the same time Lanza made the honor roll, still has not been adequately explained. But Fox, now within reach of the State’s Attorney, could provide important information.

AbleChild will continue to watch the outcome of this very compelling case, with the hope that the State may make inquiries of Fox about Lanza’s mental health care…even if that means just getting its hands on Fox’s billing records.

 

What Happened to the First Amendment, Sandy Hook?

January 21st, 2016 | Press Releases

In response to Jacqueline Smith and her opinion of Professor James Tracy, two words immediately spring to mind: Toughen up. Strong reaction? Yes. But trampling on the First Amendment is serious and requires a strong response.

Smith claims that Professor Tracy doesn’t have a First Amendment right to “spew his nonsense.” There is no need to go any further in her rambling, disjointed piece. Smith simply does not understand that it is precisely this kind of “nonsense” that the Founding Fathers intended to protect.

Smith may not like, appreciate, or understand Professor Tracy’s thoughts and motives, but he has a right – and some would argue a duty – to critical thinking, and a right to publically espouse those thoughts, however repugnant they may be to Smith’s, and others, delicate sensitivities.

The problem with Smith’s thought pattern, as it pertains to the First Amendment, is that she believes that if the speech is hurtful or offensive to another then it simply is unacceptable and constitutionally unprotected. That’s not how the First Amendment works, as made clear by Smith’s own ugly diatribe directed at Professor Tracy.

Let’s not forget that the Founding Fathers believed that open dialogue was so important that they made it the FIRST Amendment, not the sixth or seventh, etc.   More importantly, that freedom of speech is unabridged and there is no caveat that the speech cannot hurt someone’s feelings.

Smith’s attack on Professor Tracy’s Constitutional rights, ultimately, is due to the Professor’s questioning of the official version of events at Sandy Hook. While Smith claims her concern is that Professor Tracy crossed the First Amendment line by making a request of Lenny Pozner, in reality, anyone remotely familiar with this important case, is fully aware that Smith’s version of events was less than unbiased.

The bigger question, though, is why questioning the official version is so offensive to an alleged “newsperson?” Professor Tracy is far from the only person raising issues about Sandy Hook, as there literally are millions of websites dedicated to questioning the events at Sandy Hook and, one would think, many more millions who read them. Surely Smith is not suggesting that all of these people are not entitled to their views on the matter and must be silenced should they dare speak out publically.

What occurred at Sandy Hook has serious repercussions for not only the families of the victims and others associated with the tragedy, but everyone who is subjected to the legislative policy that has come from the incident.

As Smith well knows, the Connecticut Legislature passed sweeping, costly mental health legislation a full year prior to the release of the investigation. In other words, the legislative action was taken without full knowledge of the facts. Nevertheless, the good folks of Connecticut must not only pay for, but live by, those emotional, not fact-based, decisions. By anyone’s standards, this cannot be called responsible or thoughtful legislating.

Ablechild, a parent organization fighting for informed consent rights as they pertain to psychiatric diagnosing and psychiatric drugs, is intimately aware of the difficulties surrounding the gathering of information about Adam Lanza’s mental health records.

Despite Ablechild filing a FOIA to obtain Lanza’s mental health, toxicology and autopsy records, the state refused to publically release this information when Assistant State Attorney, Patrick Kwanashie, stated disclosure of Adam Lanza’s records “can cause a lot of people to stop taking their medications.”

These records may have provided some insight into Lanza’s actions. But to this day, despite a lengthy and costly investigation, no information about Lanza’s mental health for the five years leading up to the incident has been made publically available. Frankly, there is no information publically available that Lanza did, or did not, receive mental health services in the five years leading up to the incident.   These facts did not stop poorly thought out legislative measures from being rammed down the throats of the citizens of Connecticut.

This is just one example of the problems surrounding this incident. Anyone who read the 6700-page investigation knows there are many more. But, beyond all of this, the issue remains the right to publically discuss any, and all, issues surrounding the official version of events at Sandy Hook regardless of whose feelings may be hurt.

No, Editor Smith, you do not get to decide whose voice is worthy. You do not get to judge whose First Amendment rights are more important.  You may not like the voices you hear, or how they are used. They may be distasteful and hurtful, but every American has a right to that voice. It’s quite possible that Professor Tracy finds your opinion hurtful, and he may even think that you are writing it to purposefully harass him, but even he would have to agree that you are entitled to your damning words.

 

 

AbleChild Responds to Governor Malloy’s Clown Car Comment on Sandy Hook Legislation

January 6th, 2016 | Press Releases

“How many people can get out of a clown car at the same time?” Malloy asked. Dear Governor these are serious times with serious policy implications.

AbleChild working on behalf of the public made every attempt to be included in the legislative process in the aftermath of the murders in Newtown, Connecticut our access to this process was repeatedly denied.

Governor Malloy appointed a Sandy Hook Advisory Commission (SHAC) to review and make policy recommendations. These meetings were not open to the public and our submitted testimony on increased informed consent for the mental health consumer and implementation of the MEDWATCH program, the FDA consumer adverse drug reporting system, was never considered upon repeated submission.

AbleChild followed legislative protocol on every level. Senator Bye’s office refused our recommendations outright and our testimony was lost and was excluded from the public record until a general law committee clerk helped us restore it onto the public record.

The State’s police report illustrated the fact that Nancy Lanza attempted to report an adverse drug event from Celexa (citalopram) an antidepressant in the group of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) to Yale Child Study Center where her son was provided “mental health treatment.”

According to the State’s police report, Yale Child Study Center failed to advise Nancy Lanza to report the adverse event to the FDA MEDWATCH reporting system, instead labeled Nancy Lanza as non-compliant. AbleChild wants to change this conversation for the consumer.

The Sandy Hook advisory panel was comprised of “stakeholders” according to the Governor. The public was not considered “stakeholders” despite the fact the system is funded by taxpayers. However, Adam’s mental health providers, Danbury Hospital and Yale Child Study Center, were participants.

The commission’s recommendations were to increase forced mental health “treatments” just shy of forced medication.

The legislative circus continued as the public watched elected officials travel to the remote town of Sandy Hook to hold a televised closed legislative session for Sandy Hook residences only. A lottery system was implemented for entrance and the qualifier, Sandy Hook, Newtown residences only. The circus needs to be shutdown.

Mental Health First Aid, A $20 Million Price Tag for Compassion

December 2nd, 2015 | Press Releases

What are the odds Gary Scheppke, a member of the Marin County Board of Mental Health, would happen to be on the Golden Gate Bridge with his newly obtained “mental health first aid” certificate in hand to stop a person from jumping? According to the San Jose Mercury News the odds were pretty good, as explained in its article: A surge in federal funding for Mental Health First Aid could make it as popular as CPR.

Getting beyond the bizarre bridge encounter and Scheppke’s relationship with the Marin County Board of Mental Health, let’s take a look at the comparison the article draws to CPR and Mental Health First Aid and then the $20 million federally funded “certificate.”

According to the Mayo Clinic, “Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is a lifesaving technique useful in many emergencies, including heart attack or near drowning, in which someone’s breathing or heartbeat has stopped. The American Heart Association recommends that everyone — untrained bystanders and medical personnel alike — begin CPR with chest compressions.”

The Mayo Staff continues, “It’s far better to do something than to do nothing at all if you’re fearful that your knowledge or abilities aren’t 100 percent complete. Remember, the difference between your doing something and doing nothing could be someone’s life.”

The Mental Health First Aid eight-hour course reportedly provides skills to individuals on how to identify symptoms of mental illness, such as depression and how and when to intervene. According to Discovery’s executive director, Kathy Chierton, the course provides interactive and role-playing exercises that help participants empathize with people with mental disorders, “Often, says Chierton, “it can take a decade from when the first symptoms of mental illness show up to when people receive treatment, so early intervention is crucial.”

Let’s remember, though, that there is no objective test for diagnosing any alleged mental disorder – no X-ray, blood work, CAT scan. The diagnosis is completely subjective, based on a set of criteria voted into existence by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). According to the former head of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), Thomas Insel, the problem with diagnosing mental illness, “it lacks validity.”

Despite the fact that psychiatric diagnosing is based in neither science or medicine, millions of dollars continue to funnel into mental health services, which largely consists of prescribing dangerous mind-altering drugs – often causing the very behaviors they allegedly “treat.”

For example, the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, in which a mentally disturbed young man, Adam Lanza, killed 20 children and six adults was the rallying cry for President Obama to sign an executive order providing $20 million in federal funds for the Mental Health First Aid program.

However, according to the Connecticut state police investigation and the Connecticut Child Advocate’s “story” on Adam Lanza, from a very young age, Lanza received the best mental health money could buy. In fact according to the Hartford Courant report, the psychiatry department at Danbury Hospital performed mental health screening on Lanza and released him, concluding he was not a harm to himself or others. This is a clear indication that mental health screenings (diagnosing) are completely unreliable and, as NIMH Insel said, “lacks validity.”

It isn’t very often that someone can say they talked a person out of jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge but, according to San Jose Mercury News, Gary Scheppke, now that he has received the mental health first aid certificate, can identify mental illness when he sees it and act accordingly? Wow, that’s some miraculous training. Or, is it really just a case of one human being showing compassion to another. This compassion, though, comes with a $20 million price tag.

AbleChild’s 2015 Summer Intern

August 10th, 2015 | Press Releases

DSCN0016 (1)

Lindsay McIlmurray is AbleChild’s 2015 summer intern. Lindsay is a rising senior majoring in Psychology at The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA. She recently finished a junior year abroad program at The University of York in England and completed coursework in both research and application of psychological behavior and development. Lindsay aspires to become a clinical psychologist working with children and adolescents.

As Lindsay became more involved in research, she began to recognize the value of disclosing all information to patients and participants in behavioral health research studies. Lindsay believes her internship and association with AbleChild has greatly enhanced her understanding of informed consent and the importance it plays in the field of psychology.

 

CT Parents’ Right Coalition to Discuss Opposition to Sandy Hook Advisory Commission’s Findings on Upcoming Radio Broadcast

July 16th, 2015 | Press Releases

Connecticut Parents’ Right Coalition (CPRC) members will discuss Sandy Hook Advisory Commission (SHAC) final report and questions surrounding the findings and their opposition to the recommendations.

(CPRC) was formed in response to legislation passed under “emergency rule” without public hearings in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook mass murder.

The (CPRC) Coalition includes 40,000 Connecticut parents and more than a dozen non-profit organizations.

Sheila Matthews of AbleChild will join Deborah Stevenson, a constitutional and education attorney and fellow member of the (CPRC) on the upcoming broadcast. Stevenson also spent ten years as a reporter and has appeared on several radio programs. In a recent interview, Stevenson described the goal of the (SHAC) recommendations to serve as a national model as ‘disturbing.’

This Saturday, July 18th at 5:30 PM Eastern Time on the Republic Broadcasting Network (RBN), Matthews and Stevenson will join Deana Spingola of Spingola Speaks.   The radio talk show focuses on current events, history, warfare, health issues, and other relevant topics.

Spingola is the author of “Screening Sandy Hook.” The book examines the role of psychiatric drugs in the school shooting incident and multiple other issues and theories.

 

Minnesota Reaches Out to AbleChild to Discuss New CT Law 1-800-MedWatch on “Prescription Drug Container Bill”

July 8th, 2015 | Press Releases

On Thursday July 9th, at 7 pm Eastern time, AbleChild will be a guest on TS Radio Show with Marti Oakley.

Marti Oakley is a talk show host with a focus on state and national legislation. This is not the first time media has reached out to AbleChild regarding liberty in mental health.

This broadcast will focus on the recently passed “Prescription Drug Container Bill” that incorporated an AbleChild amendment to include the 1-800-MedWatch consumer reporting phone number directly on the containers. AbleChild will also discuss the legislative impact of the aftermath of Sandy Hook.

Senate Bill 28 “The Prescription Drug Container Bill” unanimously passed both the Connecticut House of Representatives and Senate.

The AbleChild amendment makes it mandatory for all generic prescription drug containers to carry the 1-800-MedWatch telephone number on the container.

MedWatch is a drug safety reporting system made available to consumers to allow direct reporting of Adverse Drug Events to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

This is a first-in-the-nation legislative action to provide this important consumer 1-800-MedWatch number directly on a prescription drug label, and a landmark win for consumers in Connecticut.

AbleChild Participates in Gun Violence Roundtable in Bridgeport, Connecticut

July 1st, 2015 | Press Releases

On June 29, 2015, AbleChild was one of two organizations that participated in an important Roundtable on gun violence, held in Bridgeport, Connecticut.  Mayor Bill Finch, Senator Richard Blumenthal, and Bridgeport Police Chief, Joseph Gaudett Jr., hosted the event in response to yet another community rocked by an attempted mass killing in Bridgeport, Connecticut that took the life of one and injured eight others.

Kenny Jackson of Street Safe, an organization that mentors young people, told the group, “Guns don’t kill people, people kill people,” referring to Senator Blumenthal’s attempt to sue gun manufacturers, go after the NRA, and ban “illegal” weapons.  Jackson illustrated that it is the human element that his organization’s mission focuses on, including increased parental involvement and mentoring programs.

Jackson introduced several of his staff members who shared their stories about their own journeys through the criminal justice system. AbleChild is in agreement with one of the member’s experiences with a child he mentored in the Bridgeport public school system. The Street Safe member said the student was misdiagnosed with a psychiatric disorder, ADHD, and thought there was great need for increase numbers of parent advocates for families meeting in Individual Education Plans (IEP).

Mayor Finch indicated that over-diagnosing may be due to “cultural differences” and that this was not the first time he had heard of psychiatric misdiagnosing.  AbleChild believes over-diagnosing is the product of mass marketing of psychiatric drugs and the lack of informed consent.

AbleChild’s mission is informed consent regarding psychiatric diagnosing and the potentially deadly “treatment” that is recommended.  The DEA classifies many of the mind-altering psychiatric drugs as “controlled substances.”  The “treatments” are associated with increased risk of suicide and violence according to the Food & Drug Admistration’s Black box warning on the drug packaging.

Senator Blumenthal, one of the sponsors of the roundtable, explained his desire to propose legislation to ban the use of illegal guns termed straw purchases. AbleChild does not understand how Senator Blumenthal believes a ban on an already illegal process would reduce gun violence.

AbleChild pointed out the recent indictment of several Newtown police officers who were reportedly involved in the distribution of controlled substances and “illegal” guns (4 long guns), exactly what Senator Blumenthal is trying to ban.

Furthermore, on November 26, 2013, one day after the release of the report of the Sandy Hook tragedy, Senator Blumenthal held a roundtable discussion in Bridgeport with the intent to reduce gun violence .  According to Senator Blumenthal, “The report on the Newtown tragedy revived the memories of what gun violence did not only to the Newtown community but to all communities.”

So it appears to be the same old, same old.  It is all about guns and no personal responsibility. Despite the fact these roundtables have been held on several occasions, lawmakers and law enforcement refuse to look outside the possibilities that something or someone is responsible other than a gun.  And the violence will continue.

 

 

 

Website Design by Chroma Sites