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Promotion and advocacy of alternatives to the medical model in mental health

MindFreedom has been busy in 2016 and looks forward to a potent New Year in 2017

Now more than ever in 2017, we are steadfast in our mission:
"In a spirit of mutual cooperation, MindFreedom leads a nonviolent revolution of freedom, equality, truth and human rights that unites people affected by the mental health system with movements for justice everywhere."
The parts of our mission which we have been most involved in recently have been the promotion and advocacy of alternatives to the medical model in mental health, i.e. the work of the Choices Committee in presenting mini-conferences in Boston in October, 2015 and Portland in October, 2016 - and answering telephone calls and inquiries from individuals who are having problems associated with forced treatment of various kinds.


The Creative Revolution in Mental Health mini-conferences have provided information and support for the following alternatives:
Open Dialogue
Soteria-type Sanctuary Houses
Sunrise Center for Withdrawal from Psychiatric Drugs
Intentional Peer Support
Peer-run Crisis Respite Centers
Hearing Voices Network
Wellness and Recovery Action Plan (WRAP)
At each conference we have had people who are deeply involved in each of those approaches come to the conference to meet with people who want to learn more about them, start them, support them, etc.  In both 2015 and 2016 they were held as pre-conference events for the annual conference of the International Society for Ethical Psychology and Psychiatry.
Our work in answering calls from people who are concerned about or facing forced treatment has been done mainly by our office managers.  Now that is being done by Sarah Smith.  Part of this has involved the activation of the MindFreedom Shield for three individuals.
Thank you for your continued support of MindFreedom International. Look out for our fundraising campaign that will kick off shortly.
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We are MFI

Samantha Johnson, psychiatric survivor, MFI intern

Samantha Johnson is a 22-year-old psychiatric survivor who is interning at the MindFreedom International office. "I was absolutely in disbelief at how the people were treated at the hospital. It was an environment of emotional abuse interspersed with 'treatments' and 'policies' that could be more accurately described as assault. The tragic thing is that there really are some good people working there, but they are unable to provide people with the help they need inside a system that prioritizes profits over people. It might take five years of counseling for someone to truly recover from a mental health crisis, but it takes five minutes to tranquilize them. This is why I started working with MindFreedom. For 25 years MFI has been challenging the mental health system to see us as human beings- to treat us as human beings- through peaceful activism. At MFI we emphasize individual choice, empowerment, and compassion as necessary aspects of a true healing process."
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