I have been working in mental health over the past 10 years and I have witnessed the harm that involuntary treatment can do to people. We work in a system that is primarily dedicated to the medical model and people’s recovery is judged according to how well they comply with their medical routine. Are people who don’t take psychiatric medication a danger?
I believe that it makes far more sense to actually implement the language that we preach regarding person centered, individualized treatment in which people are offered choices. I know of people living successfully and coping with their diagnosis and taking medication but I also know people who are not taking the medication.
We need a system that offers freedom, not increasing coercion.That’s why I posted the statement from mental health advocates opposing the bill proposed by Representative Tim Murphy. The bill, a revised version of The Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act (HR 3717), which failed to pass in 2013, “is based on a false connection between mental illness and violence,” said Daniel Fisher, MD, PhD, of the National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery (NCMHR), a coalition of 35 statewide and national organizations representing individuals with mental illnesses.
We need to promote recovery and empower people with lived experience of mental illness to remain effective advocates. Nothing about us without us.