What many consumers/survivors think should be changed in the MHsystem including althousing, looking into physical causes of MI and much more.
Petition for Alternatives in Mental Health Treatment
by mugwort, 27th May 2001.
Petition from Artists for Recovery for real alternatives for mental health treatment.
Artist for Recovery is a social service agency in the Greater Philadelphia, PA area. Specifically the region of the metropolitan area, its surrounding counties of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Southern New Jersey, mainly Camden and Gloucester Counties.
Admittedly AFR is local. However I truly believe that the petition is of far reaching importance to mental health consumers/psychiatric survivors worldwide. In fact it is my sincere belief that it is important that the more mental health consumers/psychiatric survivors read it the better. It has on it material that can effect every consumer/survivor out there around the world.
If my writing sounds dramatic, there is good reason. For too long, people in the mental health system have been told what to do with no or little recourse if they disagreed. Now I don't say disagree just for the sake of disagreeing. That isn't right either. Now with the Consumer/Survivor Rights movement this is finally gradually changing.
Now persons with mental illness are making themselves heard. We are standing up for our rights.
This petition is part of standing up for our rights.
Here it is verbatim:
"We the undersigned demand that the following alternatives in mental health treatment be developed and made available as options throughout the public mental health system."
1. Residental alternatives offering INTENSIVE SUPPORT, including peer support.
2. Evaluation and treatment of possible physical conditions that may cause or exacerbate psychiatric symptoms
3.Holistic treatments such as diet, nutritional supplements and herbal remedies.
4. Settings in which individuals will be supported in reducing or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs." End of petition.
My thoughts. I most definitely agree with the top three. Especially the #2. I think its terrible that an individual may be in treatment for a mental disorder when a physical condition may be causing it. Some examples I am familiar with is thyroid disorders, Candida, Cerebral Allergies, certain vitamin defiencies.
I think #4 will probably be considered the most controversial. Especially by mental health professionals, most family members and many Consumers/Survivors.
I personally wish more psychiatrists would be more open to alternative medicine or complementary medicine. The alternatives are for the most part equally effective and much more gentle. For more on that please check out my article Herbs vs Anti-Anxiety Medications.
PS. I hope to put this petition on Petitions on Line and than link it back to my "Appell Core Mental Health DisABILITIES Resources". Please see my URL in my profile. Thank you