MindFreedom International News - 01 May 2009


Today, Friday, 1 May 2009: Successful Protest Held Inside Minnesota
State Capitol Rotunda  to Stop Ray's Forced Shock
by David W. Oaks, Director, MindFreedom International
St. Paul, Minnesota: For three hours today, several dozen participants 
successfully held a peaceful MindFreedom International protest of the 
ongoing forced electroshock of Ray Sandford, a 55-year-old resident of 
Columbia Heights, Minnesota. The loud protest was held directly inside 
the majestic Rotunda of the Minnesota State Capitol in St. Paul, 
Friday, 1 May 2009.
Speakers during a news conference, covered by both mainstream and 
alternative media, included myself (flying in from Oregon, thanks to 
donated air ticket by MFI member Darby Penney), plus:
* Louise Bouta, long-time psychiatric rights activist and  electroshock survivor.
* Al Galves, PhD, psychologist, author, mental health consumer,  and
MindFreedom board member, from New Mexico.
* Daryl Trones, mental health activist and father of a  psychiatric survivor.
* Janet Saugstad, author and psychiatric survivor of the Veteran's Administration.
* Amy Storbakken psychiatric survivor and promoter of alternative 
medicine for mental health.
* John Wilson, a psychiatric survivor running for Mayor of  Minneapolis.
* Jennifer Padelford, representing the Mental Health Consumer/
Survivor Network of Minnesota, who spoke out about the need to hear 
the voice of mental health consumers/psychiatric survivors.
Louis Kayser, a MindFreedom member, drove for hours from Iowa to 
participate saying, "I have always wanted to be in a MindFreedom 
protest. I want to go to more protests!" Louis made signs for the 
event, videotaped the news conference, and even carpooled speakers 
back to their homes.
For a few photographs of the MindFreedom "May Day for Ray" protest 
inside the Minnesota Capitol Rotunda, click here:
or go here: http://tinyurl.com/may-day-for-ray
A number of speakers told their stories, and expressed their support 
for Ray, during a public speak out.
Then, after a post-protest lunch, about nine MindFreedom activists 
visited a number of Ray's elected officials. The delegation discovered 
special interest from Ray's State Representative, Carolyn Laine, who 
met with the delegation for about half an hour. Ray is a constituent 
of Rep. Laine, who pledged to work with the new ECT Work Group that 
has been formed by several mental health agencies because of the Ray 
See Action below about how to thank Rep. Laine!
The reception was much chillier at the office of State Senator Satveer 
S. Chaudhary, who is supposed to represent his constituent Ray 
Sandford. To read about Sen. Chaudhary's "stonewall" positiion on Ray, 
click here: http://www.mindfreedom.org/ray-sandford-minnesota/satveer-s-chaudhary
A six-month campaign to stop Sandford's electroshocks has gained 
international attention. Sandford has been shocked more than 40 times 
on an outpatient basis under a court order even though he and his 
family have clearly stated his desire not to be shocked. Sandford 
lives in a residential group home and is under the general 
guardianship of Lutheran Social Services.
"It's amazing that a man who is supposedly being protected by 
Minnesota court-appointed guardians and who has been represented in 
court hearings by a Minnesota public defender is suffering this kind 
of human rights violation," said Dr. Galves.
Galves said that electroshock -- also known as electroconvulsive 
therapy or ECT -- subjects the patient to as much as 600 volts of 
electricity for between one-half and four seconds. "It disables the 
brain," Galves said.
MindFreedom International is an independent nonprofit coalition of 
psychiatric survivors and others who advocate for the increased 
availability of safe, humane and effective care for people who are 
experiencing psychiatric emergencies and who oppose involuntary 
treatment.  MindFreedom can be contacted at office@mindfreedom.org.
Action * Action * Action
Please *Thank* Ray's elected State Representative Carolyn Laine for 
personally meeting with the MindFreedom delegation, and agreeing to 
look into Ray's human rights!
Show Rep. Laine there is widespread support for her taking action, 
from throughout the USA and the world!
E-mail: rep.carolyn.laine@house.mn
phone: 651-296-4331
Postal mail:
Rep. Carolyn Laine
407 State Office Building
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
Saint Paul, Minnesota 55155 USA
For more information on the Ray Campaign see:
Support nonviolent direct action?
Then Support MindFreedom International!
MindFreedom International is one of the few totally-independent 
nonprofit organizations in the mental health advocacy field, with zero 
funding from the mental health system, governments, drug companies or 
That means your membership and donation are crucial to MindFreedom 
International's campaigns for human rights alternatives.
Join or donate now: http://www.mindfreedom.org/join-donate
Times are tough, so that makes it even more important that each and 
every person give what he or she can.
Benefits include MindFreedom Journal, special web and e-mail 
networking, discount on http://www.madmarket.org  purchases, 
MindFreedom Shield, member services office... and a nonviolent 
revolution in mental health.
Support voices for choices in mental health!
Mind Your Freedom!
Donate, join now or renew early here: http://www.mindfreedom.org/join-donate
TOMORROW Saturday, 2 May, 2009, MindFreedom Twin City Affiliate 
supporters meet in a strategy session at 10:30 am at 1450 West Lake 
St., Minnesota. All supporters welcome, free.
SUNDAY, 3 May 2009, at 8 am, peacefully leaflet in front of Central 
Lutheran Church at 333 S. 12th, Minneapolis. This ELCA church is one 
of 'owners' of guardianship services overseeing Ray. (Will LSS let Ray 
visit with a new psychiatrist on Monday? So far, they are blocking 
Then at noon, Sunday, meet at the Green Medicine booth at the enormous 
May Day Parade Festival, ask for Amy. We're in the program. This is a 
fun event, so we're using humor. Prepare to do roving guerilla theater 
to "Screen for Normality" with Al & David, in a an easy street skit 
created by clown troupe of Patch Adams. We have doctor outfits for 
all, and hundreds of flyers about how nobody is normal... and how Ray 
is getting forced electroshock.

DENDRITE is a public Internet alert system about human rights in psychiatry, sponsored by Support Coalition International, sending out notices to thousands of concerned people, many of whom take ACTION NOW!


Home | Ecology of Mind | Mind-ing Ecology | Co-ordination Page | Search 
Bateson | Kelly | Maturana | von Glasersfeld | Laing | Antipsychiatry | Links
Ecology in Politics | Eco-logising Psychology | Sustainability | Environment & Nature