Monday, March 06, 2006

Coercive Psychiatry Must Stop-Libertarianz

Coercive Psychiatry Must Stop, Says Libz
Monday, 6 March 2006, 12:47 pm
Press Release: Libertarianz Party
Health Deregulation
Coercive Psychiatry Must Stop, Says Libz

Libertarianz spokesman Dr Richard McGrath says compulsory psychiatric treatment using drugs, electric shock and incarceration is a barbaric violation of human rights that should be stopped forthwith. Reacting to comments attributed to the Mental Health Commission, he said that people previously labelled as mentally ill have the same rights and responsibilities as everybody else.

“Compulsory psychiatric treatment has been used for decades to remove difficult individuals from society, when often these people have not in fact harmed anyone else,” said Dr McGrath. “Historically these people have been forcibly administered drugs, given shock treatment and locked away in psychiatric gulags.”

Dr McGrath says there is no situation which justifies the state using force to medically treat people whose behaviour merely disturbs others. “The Mental Health Act should be repealed, so that treatment for emotional and behavioural problems becomes a matter of voluntary choice.”

Libertarianz would fully privatize the health system, including the practice of psychiatry, and remove the insanity defence from criminal trials. People with behavioural issues would be expected to compensate others for acts of violence and property damage and would be handled through the justice system.

Dr McGrath added that the medical model of mental illness is still controversial and largely unproven.


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