Stop forced (involuntary) treatment becoming the law of the land. Act now.

Everything Matters: Beyond Meds

From National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery

Please share widely!

StopForcedDrugging2On Monday, the Senate is likely to vote on an urgent Medicare bill (HR 4302) that includes an unrelated program to fund forced psychiatric treatment (Title 224, Assisted Outpatient Treatment Program). A Medicare rule kicks in Tuesday, April 1, that cuts payments to doctors. The House passed HR 4302 on a voice vote with no debate last Thursday. The Senate could do the same Monday and the President could sign it before midnight.  

Call both Senators from your State IMMEDIATELY. (They will vote on this bill Monday.) Leave a short message:

“I am (name, city). My Senator should NOT vote for a Doc Fix that includes Section 224 of the House bill (HR 4302). Section 224 has nothing to do with Medicare. It would use Federal dollars to pay for forced psychiatric treatment in our communities. Forced treatment is…

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Mental Health H…


Mental Health Humanity & Respect

“All persons with a mental illness or who are being treated as such persons, shall be treated with humanity and respect for the inherent dignity of the human person…   There shall be no discrimination on the grounds of mental illness.”

UN Principals for the Protections of Persons with Mental Illness… GA resolution 46/119 of 17 Dec. 1991

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dot gumbi

I was having a ponder the other day on life, the universe and all that, and began turning over the subject of book covers. The question I was trying to answer was simple…why do book covers change whilst album covers stay the same?

Odd, isn’t it?

The very thought of changing the album sleeve to, say, Dark Side of the Moon, would fill a graphic designer (and Pink Floyd fans) with horror. I mean, can you imagine Nirvana’s Nevermind being reissued with a goldfish, instead of a baby? Or, taking it further, having the cover completely reimagined as a deodorant can that says ‘Teen Spirit’ on it.

It doesn’t work, does it? Album covers have to stay the same otherwise the world seems wrong.

So why is it different for books?

There is the old adage about never judging a book by its cover. (Although, to be honest, I’ve…

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Mental Health Cop

SR3 There is, in my professional experience, a very distinct difference between restraining burglars or street robbers who have been arrested for offences and restraining patients who have been detained or re-detained under the Mental Health Act.  The concepts of resistance or aggression may be similar; the instinct of a police officer to contain the risks that arise from resistance or aggression may be similar, but I’m beyond doubt that arresting criminals and detaining patients are qualitatively very different.

It is the very fact that the two enterprises are NOT the same thing, that renders a similar approach to each to be far too crude.  It is also a false disctinction to differentiate based on the legal framework officers are applying: arrest for crime / detain MHA.  The approach should be governed by what we know about the person being restrained: arresting a criminal suspect for an offence where we know…

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When Agents Wave the Red Flag

I took a University of Victoria, BC NANOWRIMO BOOT CAMP writing course last year, 50,000 words in 30 days, trust me, your information helps a lot!

The Daily Dahlia

It’s been almost a full year now since I signed with my agent, but the thing about querying is, if you did it for long enough, I’m not sure you ever forget what it was like.

Me? I did it on and off for four years.

I got something like ten rejections on my first ms before I stopped (not that I’d normally advise giving up after that low a number, it’s just that it was far more of a “market timing” thing – NA! – than anything else), fifty before shelving the second one (what, until my most recent ms, was “the book of my heart”), and then was very lucky to find my agent through The Writer’s Voice contest with my third, for which I only sent about five queries.

That adds up to a whole lotta two things: 1) Research 2) Rejections

When I queried the first…

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