Meet & Greet John Bola, PhD, Psych Survivor, Researcher: MF Oregon

Posted by on February 21, 2019 in Activism, Alternatives, Mental Health | 2 comments

Those of you in the Eugene, Oregon area can be in for a treat: John Bola, PhD, will be at our free monthly meeting of MindFreedom Oregon, our local affiliate. Please spread the word to folks you know in Eugene! This will be an informal chance to chat with one of the main champions of researching change in the mental health system. As a young person, John experienced human rights violations in the mental health system, including electroshock. He lived here in Eugene for a few years, but mainly has been working and studying in California and...

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More Forced Electroshock? Let’s Stop Bill in State of Washington, Now!

Posted by on February 15, 2019 in Activism, Legislature, Mental Health | 8 comments

UPDATE 2/27/19: Looks like we won! The latest word from a staffperson at the State of Washington legislature, is that the proposed bill for easier involuntary electroshock is dead this session, and that no other bills have been amended to include this idea. Some activists were concerned that the concept would simply be added as an amendment to another bill. However, loosening restrictions on forced shock are dead this session. This is the “understanding” of Kevin Black, staff coordinator/counsel for Senate Behavioral Health...

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Eco-Crisis Means Disability Movement Must Help Lead Global Revolution, Now!

Posted by on January 15, 2019 in Activism, Commentary, Disability, Environment, Normalgeddon, Peer Support | 2 comments

This year, 2019, is my 43rd year working for human rights in disability. Based on sheer numbers, we are one of the largest social change movements in Earth’s history. Let us act like it now, and help lead a world-wide revolution. Sound crazy? Well, the odds are indeed against us. However, this is not a question of what can be done, this is a question of what must be done. Here are three reasons I feel we must pour our souls into this endeavor, now: 1. Creative Disorder We in the disability movement are extremely diverse. Some of us...

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Homecare Worker in Eugene? Take Our Survey!

Posted by on December 11, 2018 in Disability, Help Wanted | 5 comments

UPDATE 17 December 2018: We have just filled all shifts. Home care workers are encouraged to fill out our online, brief, private survey, link below. We will keep answers on file for future openings and sub positions, plus you can indicate that we can share your interest with other disabled consumers. Below is our original entry: Living with severe disabilities, I have a great team of six homecare workers through Senior & Disability Services who help me throughout the week in my daily life needs. Due to a worker leaving, we are looking for...

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How Goes the “Revolution” in Mental Health?

Posted by on October 10, 2018 in Activism, Disability, Mental Health, Peer Support | 5 comments

Maybe you missed it, like I did. But this weekend I finally read the little report, about 20 pages, by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Dainius Pūras. Wow! It is amazing! The official UN news release actually calls for a “revolution” in mental health. The actual report is here, 21 pages that reads like we psychiatric survivors wrote it, see attachment: un-report-on-mental-health-2017 For example, he says “Mental health policies should address the ‘power imbalance’ rather than...

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Double Deck Memorization by David W. Oaks, Perfectly! But Why? Go Extinction Rebellion!

Posted by on September 5, 2018 in Activism, Disability, Environment, Normalgeddon, Peer Support | 20 comments

Update 12 April 2019: Here is a brief video by my good buddy David Zupan from Summer of 2018 showing me, David Oaks, perfectly memorizing the order of two shuffled decks of cards (108 cards counting the jokers). As of April 2019, I have done this nine times perfectly, faster and faster. But why? For one thing, even those of us with extreme disabilities have something to offer. I love this new group Extinction Rebellion, which uses peaceful direct action to resist the climate crisis. They call for global rebellion this Monday, 15 April 2019....

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There is Now Mainly Only ONE (1) Mental Health Issue: Climate

Posted by on August 3, 2018 in Activism, Environment, Mental Health, Normalgeddon, Peer Support | 1 comment

For more than four decades I have worked as an independent activist for human rights in the mental health system. This independence is rather rare. Many of my good friends and colleagues in the mental health advocacy field work for nonprofits that are funded mainly by the government, local state or federal. My friends often do great work, but several of us have warned about dependence on money from the very system we are trying to change. As many readers know, I worked as executive director of MindFreedom International for more than 25 years,...

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Four Great News Items About MindFreedom & Winning Human Rights in Mental Health

Posted by on July 31, 2018 in Activism, Alternatives, Mental Health, Peer Support | 3 comments

I do some consulting for the independent nonprofit, MindFreedom International, which is one of the main coalitions focusing on human rights in mental health. Here are four positive news items about MFI: 1. MindFreedom will be doing another free webinar later this Summer 2018, on choice in mental health. On August 19, 2018, MindFreedom will be holding a new free online webinar about empowering options for people needing mental and emotional support. The title of the webinar: “Voices for Choices: Organizing for Alternatives to Forced...

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We’re finishing “Creative Maladjustment Week” 2018, Get Ready for 2019!

Posted by on July 15, 2018 in Peer Support | 1 comment

We just finished another Creative Maladjustment Week. In case you are new to that phrase, for more than a decade, Martin Luther King talked about “creative maladjustment.” MLK would say that he was proud to be creatively maladjusted to problems like militarism, poverty and racism. A number of years ago, MindFreedom International began a Creative Maladjustment Week to celebrate this idea, and to challenge what is falsely called “normal.” Of course, there are 8 days in Creative Maladjustment Week. I suggest we add a...

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Are You a Psychiatric Survivor in the USA? What Helps Us Speak Up?

Posted by on May 29, 2018 in Peer Support | 6 comments

Those of us who have experienced human rights challenges because of the mental health system, have often been marginalized and silenced. Our viewpoints are diverse, and need to be part of the national conversation. Here in the USA, the debate over gun safety often involves mental health, yet we in the public seldom hear from psychiatric survivors. Personally, what is very horrifying to me is the USA federal government currently has programs in 17 cities to support court-ordered involuntary outpatient mental health. That is right, USA taxpayers...

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