Connecticut State in Mental Health Denial

The recent July 9th Ct. Mirror article, Children Stuck in Crisis, accomplishes the intended purpose of deceptively convincing the people of Connecticut that there’s a severe mental health services crisis in the state.

On the surface, the article’s author, Arielle Becker, provides a compelling scenario of the state’s youth failing to get the needed mental health care and forced to rely on emergency room services. The problem with the presentation is Becker’s failure to address a key piece of information in the reported mental-health-crisis-puzzle – the increased psychiatric drugging of Connecticut’s children.

The entire article focuses on the specific case of Peter, a 6 foot, 220 pound 13-year old, who apparently has been in the care of mental health professionals for many years of his young life. Peter is described as having “psychiatric issues and a developmental disorder that places him on the autism spectrum.”

Becker does not provide any details about Peter’s psychiatric history, including information such as when he first was diagnosed with a psychiatric mental disorder, the number of specific mental disorders he has been labeled with and, most importantly, which mind-altering psychiatric drugs he has been prescribed during his young life.

These are not unimportant questions, especially when one considers the known adverse reactions associated with most psychiatric drugs. For example, antidepressants carry the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) “Black box” warnings for increased risk of suicidality. Other known adverse reactions associated with antidepressants include aggressive and abnormal behavior, hallucinations, mania and psychosis.

Other psychiatric chemical “treatments” include anti-anxiety and antipsychotic drugs, which also carry such adverse reactions as hostility, confusion, hallucinations, agitation, restlessness and tremors.

Becker, in an attempt to get to the bottom of this mental health services crisis explains that “some mental health care providers link it to an increase in the number of children with mental health needs…others see a greater willingness to recognize problems because awareness of mental illness has grown.”

What obviously is missing from the list of reasons for the “crisis” is the increased prescribing of dangerous psychiatric drugs. In fact, the only mention of any psychiatric drug “treatment” comes at the end of the article when Becker finally reveals that Peter was seen by psychiatrists at the Institute of Living and “his medication was changed.” That’s it. Pathetically, that is the extent of the conversation about psychiatric drugging.

But the lack of important information doesn’t end there. Becker also does not provide any information about all the previous failed attempts to “fix” Connecticut’s broken mental health system. For example, in 2008, lawmakers attempted mental health fixes through the President’s New Freedom Commission on Mental HealthConnecticut’s Mental Health and Transformation State Incentive Grant.”

This $13 million dollar “fix,” as explained by Project Director, Pat Rehmer, as “Transformation efforts and activities are broad based and far reaching as they have been implemented across multiple state agencies offering the state’s citizens an array of accessible services and supports that are culturally responsive, person and family-centered.”

Certainly sounds like this “fix” should have helped Peter but, alas, it is another costly, failed mental health Band aid. Not surprisingly, this “transformation” also did not address the ever-increasing use of psychiatric drugs for “treatment” of Connecticut’s children.

Is it any wonder, then, that the “crisis” not only exists, but is worsening? The people of Connecticut still are not getting accurate information, and it is these omissions that render this article irrelevant in the debate for increased mental health services.

Ignoring important information does not benefit those who are suffering, nor does it help those in a position to make the necessary, and deadly serious, changes that are needed.

 

 

URGE CONGRESS TO DEFEAT ANY ATTEMPT TO INCREASE MENTAL HEALTH SPENDING

A recent “E-News” bulletin by the pharmaceutical supported National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) urged Congress to pass legislation to “improve” mental health care in America. The bulletin urges its members to contact their U.S. Representatives to “reinforce our commitment to action.” Nonsense. This is totally industry driven, with no public support.

NAMI members were provided information about two bills currently pending in Congress: The Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act (HR 3717) introduced by Congressman Tim Murphy (R-PA) and the Strengthening Mental Health in our Communities Act of 2014 (HR 4574) introduced by Congressman Barber.

Both of these bills benefit the ever-growing mental health/psychiatric industry and pharmaceutical companies, and both pieces of legislation use shooting incidents as the impetus for Congressional action. Murphy’s bill apparently is in response to the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School and Barber’s is in response to the 2011 Tucson mall shooting where Congresswoman Giffords and also Congressman Barber were victims.

“Improved mental health” is the mantra of both bills, suggesting that mental health care in America is subpar. So let’s look at what mental health information is available for both of these shootings.

According to media reports the Tucson shooter, Jared Loughner, had, in his junior year of High School, broken up with a girlfriend and was dealing with the death of his grandfather. Loughner was seen by psychiatrist, was diagnosed with depression and prescribed medication.

Although it is reported that Loughner never took the prescribed medication, it was at this time that friends began to notice a change in Laugher’s behavior. It also is reported that Loughner never showed any signs of violence or displayed any kind of threatening behavior…until the shooting.

Fast forward to the Sandy Hook shooting. It is reported that the 20-year old shooter, Adam Lanza, suffered from OCD and a profound form of Autism. This data reflects Lanza’s mental health status as a 15-year old, literally five years prior to the shooting. The State Police Report of the incident provides no mental health data about the mental health treatment Lanza may have received in the five years leading up to the shooting.

Five years before the shooting, Lanza was “treated” at the Yale Child Study Center and was prescribed two antidepressants, Celexa and Lexapro, and reportedly experienced serious adverse reactions to both drugs. That is the extent of the known mental health treatment Lanza received.

Both of these shooters had access to mental health professionals, both were diagnosed with psychiatric mental disorders and both received prescriptions for psychiatric drugs. What part of America’s mental health system failed them? Both sought out mental health services and both received the apparent recommended mental health treatment.

Psychiatric diagnosing is completely subjective, and psychiatrists are the first to admit that they are unable to predict whether a patient will become violent. In the case of Lanza, Yale Child Study Center’s, Dr. Robert King, reported “while I was concerned clinically with his rigidity and social constriction, I noted nothing in (the shooter) which would have made this unfortunate outcome foreseeable.”

According to Rep. Murphy, a clinical psychologist, “civil rights concerns are misplaced. When you’re in jail, homeless or in a coffin, what rights do you have?” That is an excellent question, but not for the reasons Rep. Murphy is using.

Ablechild sued the state of Connecticut to obtain the medical/mental health records, toxicology and autopsy report for Lanza. The state denied the request on the grounds that Ablechild was not a “stakeholder.” As a deceased person, Lanza has no rights and, therefore, his records should be made public.

Ablechild urges its Members and all interested parties to write to their Members of Congress demanding that not one more dime of taxpayer money be appropriated for increased mental health services until:

Federal legislation is enacted that in the case of mass shootings (2 or more) the toxicology, medical/mental health and autopsy reports of the perpetrator(s) are released for public review.

Federal legislation is enacted that would make it mandatory that mental health
data, including prescription drug information (regardless of age), is made
public in cases of mass killings (2 or more).

Federal legislation is enacted to set up a national database to collect information
on criminal acts and psychiatric drug history at the time of arrest.

While Representatives Murphy and Barber clearly are concerned about the state of the nation’s deteriorating mental health treatment services, with 70 million Americans taking at least one psychiatric mind-altering drug, there is a much larger discussion that both pieces of legislation fail to address.

With one-in-five Americans receiving mental health services in the form of psychiatric drugs, and what appears to be increasing numbers of violent acts, is it possible that the problem lies in the kind of mental health “treatment” being provided? Rather than rush to increase costly mental health services, perhaps an in-depth look at the “services” being provided is a better use of time and taxpayer funds.

 

 

 

Adam Lanza’s Psychiatrist’s Ethics Violations Raise Questions About the Legislature’s Controversial Mental Health Increases

May 14th, 2014 | Press Releases

One has to wonder.  If the State legislature had been aware of the details of the investigation into Adam Lanza’s psychiatrist, Dr. Paul Fox, prior to passing sweeping, costly mental health legislation, PA 13-3, would the vote have gone the same direction?

Let’s consider for a moment the facts of Dr. Fox’s surrender of his license to practice medicine in not only Connecticut but, also, New York.  Ablechild recently requested and received the publicly available investigative file on the circumstances surrounding Adam Lanza’s psychiatrist’s fall from psychiatric grace and, perhaps, his decision to flee the country.

The State Department of Public Health received a complaint about Dr. Fox from Yale New Haven Hospital in March of 2012.  A female patient of Dr. Fox had reported detailed information about a “consensual” sexual relationship with Dr. Fox and, by April of 2012, the State Department of Public Health had begun its investigation.

The investigative documents are, in a word, sickening.  The 59-year old Fox had engaged in a sexual relationship with a 19-year old patient he supposedly was “treating” for mental illness.  Dr. Fox had become the patient’s counselor while employed at Western Connecticut State University Counseling Center and when fired from the University for “ethics” violations, continued to “treat” the patient at his Brookfield office.

In substantiating the sexual relationship, the patient provided detailed documentation, including an inordinate number of written references by Dr. Fox about his private parts, and information about other female patients that reportedly had sexual relationships with the psychiatrist – one threatening to bring a malpractice suit against him.  Given the psychiatrist’s apparent proclivity for being sexually active with his female patients, one can only surmise he may qualify as a serial sexual predator.

More importantly, during Dr. Fox’s “treatment” of this 19-year old patient, he not only was prescribing numerous – “three or four” – psychiatric mind-altering drugs, but also was providing the patient with free drug samples (page 69 of report).  According to the patient’s mother, “she was turning into a zombie.”

Dr. Fox billed the mother’s insurance for the patient’s drug “treatment,” but when the psychiatrist and the patient “became friends” Fox no longer billed for “counseling services.”(page 68 of report)

The “consensual sexual relationship” between a 59-year old doctor and 19-year old patient lasted about two years, with the good doctor ending with a note saying “please don’t contact me.”  Absolutely pathetic!

But why is this investigation of Dr. Fox important and what does it have to do with Adam Lanza and the State’s rush to institute increased mental health services?

First, this investigation raises red flags about the public’s right to know when doctors/psychiatrists are fired for “ethics” violations from a State University, tasked with providing mental health services for teenagers.  Furthermore, was Western Connecticut State University aware of Dr. Fox’s sexual relationships with students at the university and, if so, did the university file a report with the Department of Public Health or any state oversight agency?

Additionally, on December 17, 2012 (three days after the Sandy Hook incident) police conducted a telephone interview with Dr. Fox, who is living in New Zealand, inquiring about his “treatment ” of Adam Lanza and the whereabouts of the doctor’s mental health records.  (Investigation document 00260339 -Book 7)

Dr. Fox, advised police that he “vaguely recalls treating Adam Lanza.”  Dr. Fox further advised that the only records he had in New Zealand were billing records and explained that “all of his medical records pertaining to clients he treated in the United States are currently in storage in the United States.”

Twenty-four hours later, Dr. Fox, contacted police, explaining “any medical records pertaining to Adam Lanza have been destroyed since it has been over five years since he last treated him (per state statute he is allowed to destroy any files over 5 years old).”  Dr. Fox further explained that “Adam was about 15 years of age when he last saw him.”

If Dr. Fox last saw Adam Lanza in 2007, his medical record retention, according to the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies Medical Records 19a-14-42, “unless specified otherwise herein, all parts of a medical record shall be retained for a period of seven (7) years from the last date of treatment, or, upon the death of the patient, for three (3) years.”

Dr. Fox, upon surrendering his license, agreed to adhere to the regulations regarding medical records. So, if the doctor last saw Adam Lanza in 2007, he destroyed Lanza’s mental health records two years too early.

More than that, is it not odd that Dr. Fox would initially tell police that his medical records were in storage in the U.S., then twenty-four hours later revise his statement, declaring them destroyed?  Of course, Dr. Fox’s billing records would yield a great deal of information, especially about the drugs prescribed to Lanza, but apparently the police did not follow that lead. Why?

There’s little doubt that Dr. Fox is material to the Sandy Hook investigation. Fox is reported to have been Adam Lanza’s “primary psychiatrist” and, therefore, key to understanding not only Lanza’s mental status but also his drug history. (Investigation document 00085896-Book 8 email to Dr. Fox from Nancy Lanza)

Because the State Police Report provides no mental health information about Lanza since his “treatment” by Dr. Fox in 2007, due to his obvious questionable ethical behavior, is it possible Dr. continued to treat Lanza?  Dr. Fox could answer this question by making public the billing records.  The State Police, however, did not request the records.

The larger picture, though, is the State’s rush to implement increased mental health services (Public Act 13-3) when not only was there no investigative information to support the increase, but the psychiatrist “treating” Lanza had lost his license due to ethical violations and fled the country.

If the State legislature had known about Dr. Fox’s egregious ethical violations, his obvious violation of state medical record retention regulations and his excessive prescribing of psychiatric drugs, would the vote have gone the same way?

This, of course, is the problem with political crisis management. The State legislature acted without the necessary information to make informed decisions. Given the above information, most would logically conclude that rather than implementing costly increased mental health services, what actually was needed was a top-down review of the kind of mental health services being provided.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is Increased Drugging of the Nation’s Children Really the Answer?

The Connecticut Mirror ran an op-ed yesterday by Marcy Hoyland titled Detect mental health problems early to prevent violence, that reads like an infomercial for the American Psychiatric Association (APA).

While no one could fault Hoyland for caring about the emotional and behavioral problems of the nation’s youth, the solution recommended by Hoyland is to identify mental illness early in order to get treatment before things get worse.

Sounds good. But the problem is that identifying mental illness is completely subjective. There is not one psychiatric mental disorder that is based in science/medicine. There is no objective, confirmable abnormality that is a psychiatric disorder.

Hoyland suggests that “by identifying individuals with risk factors to chronic diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease, we can treat these people in a way to keep them healthy for as long as possible. The same is true of mental health care.”  Actually, given that psychiatric diagnosing is subjective, it isn’t at all the same.

The fact is diabetes and heart disease are not diagnosed by the patient answering questions about their behavior. Unlike psychiatric diagnosing, medical tests are utilized to determine these actual medical conditions.  There are no medical tests – urine or blood tests, MRI or CAT scans – used to diagnose mental disorders.

And, of course, the decades long theory of the alleged chemical imbalance remains just that…a theory.  There is no test to determine the chemical levels in the brain, making it impossible to know whether the chemicals are in, or out, of balance or, for that matter, what “normal” levels may be.

Hoyland throws in a few interesting statistics to make her case for early detection, including the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) estimate that one in five children in the U.S. has a mental health “issue” and 70 percent of those individuals do not receive care. Sounds dire. But the reality is that the U.S. is diagnosing and drugging its youth at record speed.

Consider for moment a recent study by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)  that more than 11 percent of American school children now are diagnosed with ADHD, 7.5 percent of children ages 6-17 are being prescribed psychiatric mind-altering drugs for emotional and behavioral problems and “over the last two decades, the use of medication to treat mental health problems has increased substantially among all school-aged children.”

The fact is that mental health “treatment” in America primarily consists of the use of powerful mind-altering drugs. According to a study by IMS Health nearly 79 million Americans are taking at least one psychiatric drug, including nearly seven-and-a-half million children between the ages of 6 and 17.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has placed “Black box” warnings on many of these psychiatric mind-altering drugs because the federal agency has concluded that the drugs may actually cause suicidality and the drug makers warn of violent behavior, mania, psychosis and a host of other serious behavioral adverse reactions.

One can only assume that Hoyland was not aware of these data and, perhaps, is why she advocates that schools should have people who are trained to subjectively diagnose mental illness so they can identify your child and get them the “treatment” they need.

This is a frightening thought.  One cannot help but envision these suggested “trained” mental health “people” stalking the halls of the nation’s schools eagerly looking for “abnormal” behaviors that can be “treated.”

Even more frightening is Hoyland’s support of Congressional legislation that would “provide access to school-based comprehensive mental health programs.”  In other words, more mental health diagnosing and more drugs for the nation’s youth.

Of course the bigger question is what rights do parents have once these school mental health guesters “identify” the child’s mental health problem? Hoyland appears to assume that parents will be thrilled to get the psychiatric “help” they’re told their child needs. That isn’t necessarily so and the case of Justina Pelletier, being held hostage by Boston Children’s Hospital, is a perfect example of how parents can lose their rights once psychiatry makes a subjective diagnosis.

U.S. Representative Steve Stockman (R-TX) introduced legislation, H.R. 4518, The Parental Protection Act, that will address these issues, cutting off funds to medical institutions that conduct greater than minimal risk research on wards of the state, deny First Amendment rights to parents and wards of the state, and take children away from parents over disagreements on subjective diagnoses.  As Ablechild’s mission is about informed consent, we wholeheartedly support this legislation.

Furthermore, while Hoyland is advocating for increased mental health in the nation’s schools, one cannot help but ask why isn’t anyone getting better?  Will the mental health community not be satisfied until every American is diagnosed with a mental disorder and drugged?

The recent stabbing in Milford, Ct., may be a good example of mental health’s “treatment” success.  News reports state that the alleged suspect “had ADHD and other mental issues…he took strong medicine for it and other things, too.”

Having specific information about the psychiatric drugs this teenager had been prescribed would be helpful in trying to understand the violent behavior, especially given the FDA’s “Black box” warnings on most of the psychiatric drugs.

Hoyland  begins the op-ed with a reference to the ever-increasing number of school shootings in America, then suggests the reason for the problem is the lack of mental health treatment among the nation’s school-age children, yet fails to even address the connection between the prescribed psychiatric drugs and violence.

If Hoyland is really concerned about finding an answer to the increased number of violent acts, isn’t it time to consider that there may actually be a problem with the mental health “treatment” being provided?

 

 

 

 

Ablechild Winner “Pays it Forward” to Mom in Need

George Papadopoulos Pays it Forward

Ablechild is happy to announce that on Thursday, April 24th, during our annual Fundraising event,  a winner was drawn for the Spring Fling Basket of gifts. The winner was George Papadopoulos of Salon KIKLO of New Canaan, Connecticut.

Keeping in the spirit of Ablechild’s mission to help others, Mr. Papadopoulous has graciously decided to “pay it forward” and donate the $300.00 Salon KIKLO beauty services to another deserving person chosen by Ablechild.

Ablechild Member, Stephanie Priestman, has been struggling with the Connecticut Department of Children and Family Services (DCF) in an attempt to protect her children from forced psychiatric drugging. Because of the ongoing difficulties Priestman is faced with, Ablechild is pleased to pass this gift on to a most deserving mother.

Will The Governor Include MedWatch Training To Proposed Mental Health Initiatives?

January 27th, 2014 | Press Releases

Will The Governor Include MedWatch Training To Proposed Mental Health Initiatives?

Sandy Hook Shooter Proves Need For Inclusion

In an apparent response to the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, Connecticut Governor, Dannel P. Malloy, has announced increased funding in the state’s mental health budget. Why?

If shooter, Adam Lanza, had been a product of the state mental health system there may be some evidence to back up such broad changes, and this increased spending may make sense. But, to date, there is no evidence that Lanza received any state mental health assistance.

In fact, based on what little information has been made public about Lanza’s mental health treatment, it appears that, beyond school recommendations to the family, the father’s private insurance was used and the family did not depend on state sponsored benefits.

Of course, the last publically known mental health treatment Lanza received was from the Yale Child Study Center, which, oddly enough, provided information to investigators about an adverse drug event Lanza was experiencing from the prescribed antidepressant, Celexa.

According to the State Police investigation of the shooting, Yale Child Study Center Registered Nurse, Kathleen Koenig, prescribed Celexa to Lanza and was “immediately” contacted by Nancy Lanza, who reported that her son was “unable to raise his arm.”

Did Koenig recommend discontinuation of the antidepressant?  No. In fact, Koenig told police investigators that she tried to “convince Nancy Lanza that the medication was not causing any purported symptoms which Adam might be experiencing.”

Koenig’s response seems questionable.  First it is important to point out that Celexa has not been approved for use by children, so the prescription was written “off-label” when Adam was 15 years old.  More importantly, though, the “serious side effects” include: “call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as: very stiff (rigid) muscles.”

To the layman, it doesn’t seem out of the realm of possibility that Lanza, unable to lift his arm, may have been experiencing one of the serious side effects of the antidepressant.  In fact, a quick perusal of the internet reveals many reports of similar complaints associated with Celexa.

Is it possible that Koenig was unaware of the specific side effects associated with Celexa?  Did Koenig review the possible adverse side effects of Celexa before providing her medical advice?

Koenig further reports to investigators that “Nancy Lanza was not receptive to Koenig’s reasoning,” and that Nancy Lanza “missed at least one scheduled appointment…and failed to schedule subsequent appointments for Lanza.”

Again, given Koenig’s response to Nancy Lanza regarding what very likely could be a serious adverse reaction to the psychiatric drug, is it so tough to understand why Nancy Lanza decided to end her son’s relationship with the Yale Child Study Center?”

It is interesting to note, however, that investigators do not mention whether Koenig reported this adverse drug event to the Food and Drug Administration’s MedWatch System. Nor do investigators mention whether Koenig advised Nancy Lanza that she could report the adverse event to the FDA herself.

Ablechild believes that the MedWatch System is an important, no-cost, tool that is necessary for the FDA to make safety recommendations and post warnings to consumers about drugs. In an effort to provide consumers with this important information, Ablechild is lobbying State lawmakers in an effort to have information about the MedWatch System made part of any new mental health training among educators and mental health care workers.

Given that the Yale Child Study Center receives state mental health funding, it seems appropriate that Governor Malloy might consider it important for organizations, such as the Yale Child Study Center, be made aware of the availability to consumers about the MedWatch System.

It’s only speculation, but it would appear that Nancy Lanza’s reporting of the adverse drug event her son was experiencing was a perfect time for an organization, such as Yale Child Study Center, to take advantage of the FDA’s MedWatch System.

 

 

 

 

Foster Care in Connecticut Conflicts of Interest

January 22nd, 2014 | Press Releases

Foster Care in Connecticut and Conflicts of Interest

Today the  Connecticut Mirror ran an article that for any eight grader would be confusing. Supposedly, the State Department of Children and Family Services, DCF, isn’t meeting federal standards when it comes to the State’s Foster Care System.

However, beneath the service what the story really appears to be is special interest groups looking for increased funding, specifically mental health funding.

Interestingly, in 2011 Ablechild wrote about the conflicts of interest that permeate the Foster Care system and, again, these same special interests are rearing their ugly heads in search increased mental health funding.

Worse, it appears that these special interest groups are jumping on the Sandy Hook mental health gravy train. As is well known, in the wake of Sandy Hook, the State will be considering increased funding for increased mental health services for the state.

Although the federal monitor believed that “system-level problems persist” in the State’s Foster Care system, Ablechild finds it odd that despite a decrease in the number of children in the state’s Foster Care system, and praise from the Department of Health and Human Services, federal agency that oversees Foster Care, that there is now a huge push for increased funding.

Regardless of what strides have been made in the State’s Foster Care system, it appears that the vast majority of funds that may be appropriated most certainly will be for additional mental health services.

Ablechild agrees with Raymond Mancuso, the federal court monitor, when he said “the problem has intensified.”  But deferring to special interest groups with conflict of interest issues, and throwing money into increased mental health funding won’t address any of the stated problems within the system.

 

NEWTOWN ONE YEAR LATER, THE MISSING LINK

December 13th, 2013 | Breaking News, Press Releases

In one of a long string of mass murders ending with the killer committing suicide, Sandy Hook, Newtown grabbed the attention of the entire world on December 14, 2012 when yet another mental health client went on a killing spree.

President Obama went to Newtown, Connecticut during the time families were mourning the loss of their children and before their burials.  The President took to the stage at the Newtown High School blocks from the deadly killings and delivered a powerful, moving heartfelt speech where he began to launch a very targeted campaign.  The President said, “We as a nation, we are left with some hard questions.”

As Steve Peoples from the Associated Press writes in his article, Year after Newtown, Gun control Groups keep hope”, “A divided Congress denied President Barack Obama’s calls for change.”  The Associated Press article describes the movement being led by President Obama.  What is not mentioned in the article, this political movement is being built on the backdrop of mourning parents, a failed investigation, a State unwilling to release the shooter’s mental health and special education records, with an incomplete release of a toxicology summary.

The AP report discloses a battle plan of a national operation backed by an alliance of well-funded organizations set up to pressure Congress ahead of next fall’s elections. The groups are sending dozens of paid staff into key states, enlisting thousands of volunteer activists preparing to spend tens of millions of dollars against politicians who stand in the way of their goals.

As the Cofounder of Ablechild, during a Fox News interview with Douglas Kennedy in the aftermath of the Red Lake massacre, Douglas Kennedy asked me, “What do you want?”  I responded, “A federal hearing into to link between psychiatric drugs and school shootings”.

We are not alone in asking the hard question. In Congresswoman Betty McCollum’s home district town hall meeting in Minnesota, again the same question, “What is the link to the shootings and the psychiatric drugs?”

The Congresswoman’s response is stunning. She said that the CDC, the Center for Disease Control, has a “rule” that prohibits the Congress from studying the link between psychiatric drugs and mass shootings. (video 39.30).

Is that true? No.

The CDC is a federal agency under the Department of Health and Human Services.  It certainly doesn’t have the power of “rule” making over Congress.

Ablechild reached out for clarification to her office regarding her comments on this CDC rule.  We received back an article about President Obama and gun control that had nothing to do with our quest for clarification on the CDC rule.  We were asked to put our request in writing; we did and as of yet have not received a response.

Congresswoman McCollum’s home State of Minnesota on March 21, 2005 suffered a killing spree called the “Red Lake Massacre” that occurred in two places on the Ojibwa Red Lake reservation.

A 16 year old, Jeffrey Wiese killed his grandfather, a tribal police officer and his grandfather’s girlfriend at their home, before going to Red lake Senior High School where he killed seven people, and wounded five others, then committed suicide.

According to relatives the teenager was taking the antidepressant Prozac, 20 milligrams 3 times a day.

Congresswoman McCollum has a great opportunity to respond to her district and push for federal hearings on mass murders and their link to psychiatric drugs.

Ablechild will continue to push for these federal hearings.  We plan to participate in the upcoming Connecticut February short legislative session to ensure the toxicology panels at the medical examiner’s office are updated and include clinical trial drugs, as well as to obtain a transparent policy  regarding toxicology reports, mental health records, and the associated link to mental health treatments in the aftermath of mass murders and suicides.

This type of legislation will ensure the public has the compelling data that already exists allowing the public to fully participate in the legislative process and to produce life saving public policies.

We agree with President Obama, it is time to ask hard questions.  We, however, don’t think it is a time to build a political movement, pass executive orders giving more funding to an unregulated and unaccountable mental health industry without asking the hard questions.  This is a vital pubic health and safety issue.

We encourage Congresswoman McCollum along with her district voters to help us obtain those federal hearings and welcome her response on our inquiry.

 

CT AAG Nervous About Releasing Adam Lanza’s Medical Records: Disclosure “Can Cause A Lot of People to Stop Taking Their Medications.”

September 1st, 2013 | Press Releases

For Immediate Release:

Contact Sheila Matthews
203-253-0329

STATE of Connecticut Claims Disclosure of Adam Lanza’s Records “Can Cause A Lot of People to Stop Taking Their Medications” in Recent Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Hearing.

Ablechild vs. Chief Medical Examiner (FIC Docket No: 2013-197):

Attorney, Patrick B. Kwanashie, AAG for the Office of the Attorney General argues release of Adam Lanza’s records to public “can cause a lot of people to stop taking their medications”.  Ablechild argues that lack of transparency compromises informed consent and puts public health “at risk”.

December 14, 2012, 20 year-old Adam Lanza fatally shot twenty children and six adults in a mass murder at Sandy Hook Elementary School in the village of Sandy Hook in Newtown, Connecticut.  He committed suicide by shooting himself in the head.

Many would agree that to prevent future tragedies from occurring like those in Newtown and Littleton, Colorado we should have a deeper understanding of what the key components and common factors are that drive a person to such acts of violence.  Ablechild, a national parent rights organization with parent members within Sandy Hook and Newtown, have been on the front lines of the Newtown tragedy as it unfolded.  It has been asking for accountability in the form of disclosure of all records pertaining to the shooter as a means of transparency, to provide the public with facts that could be pertinent in protecting their safety. Sadly this transparency has eluded the Newtown “investigation” from the start.

One relevant question that has remained unanswered was whether or not Adam Lanza was under the influence of one or more drugs, to include all prescription drugs.

“What plagues this investigation is that some are simply fixated on having it remain secret in spite of the urgency of transparency that is clearly needed to protect the public,” said Patricia Weathers Cofounder of Ablechild.  “It is alarming that here we are very close to a year later and the public still remains in the dark, records are still sealed, and the State is now saying that it is opposing a release of the records because those records “can cause a lot of people to stop taking their medications”.  This opposition comes despite the fact that 31 school shootings and/or school-related acts of violence have been committed by those taking or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs resulting in 162 wounded and 72 killed and despite the fact that Ablechild for years has been asking for a federal investigation into the link between psychiatric drugs and these violent acts, without result.

Mrs. Weathers went on to add, “If there is nothing to hide then disclose, especially if this information has the potential for reevaluating the use of certain psychiatric drugs that evidence shows are contributing to the rapidly growing acts of violence in this country in recent years.  Our organization thinks that both the Medical Examiner’s office and State’s actions are unacceptable and reprehensible because in actuality they place the public at risk.”

What should be more alarming to the public is that the media doesn’t question this failure to disclose that is being arbitrarily wielded by the State Medical Examiner’s Office, despite the evidence that at the very least should call for a review.  In the midst of this tragedy the State itself has scrambled for solutions in the form of firearm prevention legislation and sweeping mental health funding without ever actually demanding that all evidence be reviewed first before passing such legislation.

Newtown was the second deadliest mass shooting by a single person in American history, after the 2007 Virginia Tech Massacre and comes 14 years after Columbine.  What is telling in all of this…America is still chasing its tail while the public pays a heavy price!

For more information on Ablechild’s demand for accountability and transparency within the State of CT watch our case before the Freedom of Information Act Commission.

 

 

Ablechild Confronts CT Governor On Radio Over Newtown Shooter’s Records

May 30th, 2013 | Press Releases

Ablechild’s Co-Founder, Sheila Matthews, recently hit the radio, where she took on CT Governor, Dan Malloy and his recent move to pass a law to alter the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to prevent the release of the records of the latest school shooter in Newtown.  This move comes as Ablechild awaits a response to its appeal requesting that Adam Lanza’s medical records and toxicology report be released under FOIA in the interest of public safety.

“Viewpoint” will air on Sunday, June 2nd at 7:30am with Tony Savino on WGCH 1490-AM.

Here is the hard hitting audio interview in its entirety.

savino-mathews viewpoint 5-28-13 pt 1

savino-mathews viewpoint 5-28-13 pt 2

 

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