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US Senate: Ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, without Reservations, Understandings or Declarations (RUDs)

The Campaign to Repeal Mental Health Laws seeks your support to urge the US Senate to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), without reservations, understandings or declarations (RUDs). 

We are working for the repeal of mental health laws that allow people to be deprived of their liberty, drugged, restrained, electroshocked and otherwise treated against their will in the name of “psychiatric help”.  Countless numbers of people have experienced being handcuffed and taken away by police when they have done nothing violent, being tied to a stretcher in an emergency room, being drugged against their will with haloperidol and other neuroleptics, being deprived of their memory by electroshock “treatment,” being guinea pigs in a vast uncontrolled experiment with psychiatric medications that shorten their lives and often cause them to feel horrible in new ways rather than giving relief, being disbelieved when they complain about physical health problems or unwanted effects of the drugs, and so much more.  Many start their traumatic journey through the mental health system as children.  Coercive and forced psychiatric interventions cause irreparable damage from which some have never recovered.  We know that more of the same medical-model, coercive mental health system is not the answer to any social problem or to any human need.  These atrocities need to stop. 

Ratification of the CRPD will help stop these atrocities in the US, only if it is ratified without the RUDs endorsed by the Obama administration.

The CRPD is based on the principle of non-discrimination and protects the rights of all persons with all disabilities, including the rights to equal recognition before the law, to liberty, to freedom from ill-treatment and torture, to physical and mental integrity, and to health care on the basis of free and informed consent.  US laws discriminate against persons with psychosocial/psychiatric disabilities by expressly permitting and condoning involuntary psychiatric interventions on the basis of a diagnosis of mental illness.  The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Juan Méndez, has underscored the right to freedom from forced psychiatric interventions, calling for an absolute ban and affirming that forced interventions constitute at least inhuman and degrading treatment and may amount to torture. 

The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is coming up for ratification again by the US Senate.  We need your support to urge the Senate to end these atrocities and ratify the CRPD without RUDs.

 

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