On November 29, New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced his administration’s 11-point legislative agenda, which seeks to enforce an expanded interpretation of the state’s existing mental hygiene laws governing forced treatment. In a speech unveiling the plan, Mayor Adams said: “A common misunderstanding persists that we cannot provide involuntary assistance unless the person is violent, suicidal, or presenting a risk of imminent harm. This myth must be put to rest.”

The administration’s agenda provides for the “involuntary removal” and hospitalization of persons who appear to be both “suffering from mental illness” and “in danger due to inability to meet their basic needs.” While affirming that the administration would try to get individuals to accept help voluntarily, Mayor Adams stated: “But we will not abandon them if those efforts cannot overcome the person’s unawareness of their own illness. In short, we are confirming that a person’s ‘inability to meet basic needs,’ to the extent that it poses a risk of harm, is part of the standard for mental health interventions.”

The announcement was immediately condemned by the disability community, homeless advocacy groups, and human rights organizations, and has resulted in a tsunami of coverage. But the voices of unhoused people have been less frequently heard in the public debate and reaction to the Adams administration proposal.

Lisa Ortega, formerly unhoused organizer with Take Back the Bronx, told Mad in America that involuntary removals of unhoused people were already happening in New York City. “A lot of people get put away involuntarily,” she said. “They get medicated immediately. And they can’t even fight back because they get medicated.”

She voiced fears that her Black and Brown unhoused neighbors would be further targeted under the new guidance. “If a homeless person just puts up their arm and says, ‘No, don’t,’ that’s considered ‘resistance,’” she said. “‘They’re ‘decompensating.’ They were ‘violent.’ They were ‘aggressive.’ This is more of a green light to just take people in.”

Ortega pointed the finger at the Adams administration and past administrations for producing conditions of poverty and houselessness in the city. “They’re the ones that are making people sick in the streets, putting them in the streets to begin with,” she said.

A Half-Century of Tug of War

According to Mayor Adams, this is the first time that a mayoral administration has issued official guidance on the “basic needs” standard. But efforts to loosen existing civil rights protections have a 50-year history, going back to the earliest years of the deinstitutionalization movement in the 1970s.

In 1971, schoolteacher Alberta Lessard was facing lifetime civil commitment to a Milwaukee public psychiatric facility and was being forcibly medicated when she called Milwaukee Legal Aid Services for help. Lessard became the plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit, launched on behalf of all persons involuntarily committed in the state of Wisconsin. The case went to a U.S. District Court, which ruled in 1972 that Wisconsin’s civil commitment laws violated the Constitution, and this for a time became the guiding decision.

Alberta Lessard being ejected from a Milwaukee courtroom, February 1980. Photo credit: George Holloshek“Historically, persons alleged to be mentally ill have had the constitutional status of children,” wrote civil rights attorney Thomas K. Zander in 1976. Prior to the Lessard decision, mental health law operated under the doctrine of parens patriae, which views the state as a benevolent force intervening in the welfare of those deemed unable to help themselves.

Lessard held that people facing involuntary commitment to psychiatric facilities should be given the same due process rights as those facing the criminal legal system. The law enacted the strongest-ever standard for civil commitment: that of imminent danger to self or others, shifting the burden to the State to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that an individual’s deprivation of liberty was warranted. States across the country followed suit, adopting similar legal reforms.

The Lessard decision faced near-immediate pushback. In 1973, Wisconsin psychiatrist Darold Treffert began sharing anecdotes about people found not committable under the new laws, who went on to die by suicide, anorexia, and other causes. Treffert coined the term “dying with their rights on,” which has become an ongoing rallying cry among coalitions of medical authorities, family advocates, and policymakers across the country seeking to correct the pendulum swing towards civil rights. To this day, these coalitions continue to use Treffert’s strategy of invoking rare and horrific tragedies involving people designated as “severely mentally ill” as rationale for loosening inpatient and outpatient commitment standards.

Lessard did not specifically address the right to refuse medication, otherwise known as the right to informed consent. Zander, an adjunct professor of law at Marquette University, told Mad in America via email that there are no U.S. Supreme Court precedents that specifically recognize the right of civilly committed persons to refuse medication.

He explained that a handful of cases, including Washington v. Harper (1990), Riggins v. Nevada (1992), and Sell v. United States (2003), established that substantive due process limits the State’s authority to forcibly medicate incarcerated people and criminal defendants found incompetent to stand trial. He noted that in all due process matters, “the devil is in the details,” stating that “in applying that general principle to civilly committed individuals, state courts and federal district courts have gone in different directions as to how far they have limited the State’s authority to forcibly medicate.”

Despite the Lessard reforms, thousands of disabled people continued to be involuntarily warehoused in the 1970s and 1980s. The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ushered in a new, anti-discrimination approach. In the mid-1990s, Lois Curtis and Elaine Wilson, both confined against their will in Georgia state institutions, became the plaintiffs in Olmstead v. L.C. The 1999 U.S. Supreme Court decision held that institutional confinement constituted a violation of Title II of the ADA, and established the unqualified right of disabled people to receive supports in the community. A wave of Olmstead cases that followed ushered in a second phase of deinstitutionalization.

Lois Curtis, center, presents President Barack Obama with a gift of her artwork in 2011. Photo Credit: Pete Souza.
The Rise of AOT

At the same time that Olmstead was being litigated, the high-profile 1999 New York City subway murder of Kendra Webdale by Andrew Goldstein set off a renewed backlash to the civil rights agenda, in the form of involuntary outpatient commitment. That same year, members of Ms. Webdale’s family, along with the newly-formed NAMI spinoff group, the Treatment Advocacy Center (TAC), successfully advocated for “Kendra’s Law,” the first involuntary outpatient commitment law in the United States. The name was euphemistically changed to “assisted outpatient treatment (AOT).” Despite the softened re-branding, Kendra’s Law reinvigorated the ongoing policy push to reframe “untreated severe mental illness” as a public safety issue.

The public safety approach has been gaining steady ground. In the 24 years since the TAC was founded by E. Fuller Torrey, AOT laws have been passed in 47 states and the District of Columbia, and the program has received federal funding.

AOT has been widely criticized not only for its infringement of rights, but its lack of efficacy. The 2001 Bellevue Study compared the outcomes of people compelled to accept outpatient treatment vs. those offered services voluntarily, and found no difference. A 2017 Cochrane Library review of AOT research affirmed the initial Bellevue findings, finding that compulsory outpatient treatment has “no clear difference in service use, social functioning or quality of life compared with voluntary care or brief supervised discharge.”

Almost from the start, the AOT program has been heavily disparaged for its glaring racial disparities. A 2005 New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI) report examining Kendra’s Law implementation found that Black people were five times more likely, and Hispanic individuals were two and a half times more likely, to be subjected to a court order than their white counterparts. “We submit it is immoral and irresponsible to continue a system of compulsion that is so biased,” the report concluded.

New York’s Office of Mental Hygiene statistics, among the clearest AOT demographics data available to the public, illustrate that statewide disparities have persisted to this day. In New York City itself, the disparities only increase. The city’s population is 24% Black and 29% Hispanic, but 44% of those on AOT orders are Black people, and 32% are Hispanic people.

Source: New York’s Office of Mental Hygiene

“The AOT system compounds upon the already existing systems of oppression against Black and Hispanic New Yorkers. In this regard, the AOT system has become, perhaps unwittingly, more akin to the criminal legal system—an inherently racist system that primarily deprives people of color of their rights and liberties,” wrote Victoria Rodríguez-Roldán in a 2022 examination of AOT’s racial disparities. These disparities are by no means limited to New York, but are present in other cities. A March 2019 evaluation of San Francisco’s AOT program found that Black people represent nearly a quarter of those placed under AOT orders, while comprising just 5% of the city’s population.

Five of the eleven points in the Adams’ Administration’s legislative agenda propose policy fixes to remove “barriers to AOT.” The heavy emphasis on strengthening AOT in the Mayor’s plan is unsurprising, considering that in July of this year the administration hired Brian Stettin as senior advisor for severe mental illness. Stettin is the former policy director of the Treatment Advocacy Center; as Assistant New York State Attorney General, he was also a key player in the original conception and drafting of Kendra’s Law.

Involuntary Treatment Legislation Spreads Coast to Coast

Mayor Adams’ announcement is only the latest in a string of efforts to remove unhoused people from urban areas and to compel them to accept psychiatric treatment. “It’s an emerging era of re-institutionalization,” Vesper Moore, mad justice activist with the Kiva Center, told Mad in America.

In September, California governor Gavin Newsom signed the Community Assistance, Recovery and Empowerment (CARE) Act into law, which enacts a regime of CARE Courts. The legislation targets individuals diagnosed with psychotic disorders, ordering them to comply with a CARE plan for up to 24 months, with threat of being forced into a conservatorship if they do not.

The CARE Act was roundly condemned by people with lived experience, as well as civil rights, disability rights, and human rights organizations for its emphasis on coercion. In a statement, the California Association of Mental Health Peer Run Organizations (CAMHPRO) said: “This plan is not a new approach and a paradigm shift. In fact, it resorts to the same old default of the behavioral health system—forced treatment. A court order is forced treatment. Also, force is force, whether in a hospital setting or located in the community, in a home.”

Similar in tone and tenor to the CARE Act, there have also been a number of bills introduced into state legislatures that criminalize unhoused people for simply existing in public, in the form of so-called “camping bans,” and compel them to accept court-ordered treatment.

Many of these bills are based on model legislation called the “Reducing Street Homelessness Act,” created by the Cicero Institute, a conservative think tank founded by tech entrepreneur Joe Lonsdale. Lonsdale was mentored by Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel, a major supporter of Donald Trump, along with other Republican candidates including JD Vance (R-Ohio) and Blake Masters (R-Arizona). Along with Thiel, Lonsdale is a co-founder of Palantir, a secretive CIA-funded software company whose technology has been used for migrant surveillance and predictive policing. While Silicon Valley has long projected a liberal image, a powerful cadre of entrepreneurs like Lonsdale and Thiel are focused on remaking a “new American right.”

In the past year, legislation modeled on the Cicero bill has gained traction, passing in Texas, Missouri, and Tennessee, whose bill is the first to make public camping a felony. Similar bills introduced in Wisconsin, Georgia, Arizona, and Oklahoma failed in recent legislative sessions. And liberal cities like Portland, Los Angeles, and San Francisco are also strengthening camping bans and criminalization.

Cicero’s model legislation seeks to expand existing criminalization efforts, making it illegal to camp on public land in any area other than designated parking areas or camping sites, punishable by up to one month in jail and/or a $5,000 fine. Those residing in designated camping facilities would be required to participate in mental health and/or drug treatment, including invasive drug testing. Failure to comply with treatment, including a positive drug screen, would result in “removal” from such facilities. What would happen to individuals after such removal is unspecified.

The bill also provides for “mental health supervision” petitions. Like the Adams proposal, these petitions hinge on the most expansive interpretation of involuntary treatment statutes, going even beyond the inability to care for oneself to having “a mental state that will deteriorate to a dangerous level without medical intervention.”

Cicero’s model bill also includes an AOT provision. After an individual’s 72-hour hold expires, providers are encouraged to place people under AOT orders “when appropriate.” Those failing to comply with their court-ordered treatment plan are also subject to up to one month in jail and/or a $5,000 fine. (While Cicero Institute and TAC staff have had policy conversations, there is no formal relationship between the two groups, Judge Glock, Cicero’s senior director of policy and research, told Mad in America.)

The Cicero bill shifts funding from permanent supportive housing efforts to temporary encampments. Joining other right-leaning think tanks such as the Manhattan Institute and the Heritage Foundation, the Cicero Institute takes aim at Housing First programs, declaring them a “failure” and instead pushing for a mandated “treatment first” approach that employs a “carrot and stick.”

Advocates Respond: “It’s Just a Way to Remove Them From Sight”

When asked to respond to the claims of conservatives that the Housing First model has failed, and that a “treatment first” approach is preferable, Ortega told Mad in America, “Tell all those right wing motherf–ckers, ‘Give us your housing and then we’ll learn from you how to navigate that without a home…Give us your home and then we’ll watch you and we’ll note it. It’ll be a case study, how you maneuver that.”

Protestors rally at City Hall to condemn the Adams mental health plan, December 8, 2022. Photo credit: Vesper Moore

Kim Hopper, a medical anthropologist at Columbia University who has for four decades studied policies impacting unhoused people, repudiated assertions that Housing First has been a failure, noting that there simply isn’t enough permanent supportive housing to meet the demand. “The forces generating homelessness don’t come from ‘failed’ Housing First programs,” he told Mad in America. “They come from all sorts of structural factors that are making it impossible for people to afford the rent. Or they are being discharged from a variety of facilities with really poor follow-up plans that eventually land them on the street or in shelters. And once they’re in the shelters, they discover, ‘This is not a place I want to live.’”

According to Shams DaBaron aka “da homeless hero,” who is providing guidance to the Adams administration while not agreeing with all of its policies, partial blame for the current situation lies with Callahan v. Carey (1979), which affirmed the legal right to shelter in New York City. “[Callahan] gives us our shelter-industrial complex, and it also gives us our problems,” he told Mad in America. “Because instead of building supportive housing, instead of putting money towards psychiatric stabilization beds, they just put it towards shelters.”

“This is rooted in systemic racism. And this is by design. This is codified,” DaBaron added.

Lisa Ortega, center, at a 2016 rally against gentrification in the Bronx. Photo credit: DNA Info/Eddie Small

Advocates calling for “housing not handcuffs” warn that the strengthening of anti-camping bans and criminalization of unhoused individuals will inevitably increase deadly police encounters and exacerbate existing racial disparities, given that 40% of unhoused people in America are Black, despite comprising only 17% of the total population.

Theo Henderson, writer, unhoused organizer and host of the We the Unhoused podcast, told Mad in America that unhoused Angelenos received the Adams Administration announcement with alarm. “The same thing that they’re doing over in New York, they’re trying to implement here,” he said. “They already have dispatched and sent out people to go after unhoused people who are maybe in various stages of breaks from reality.”

Henderson, who has been organizing for the repeal of 41.18, the Los Angeles statute that criminalizes poverty and houselessness, clarified that a person does not even need to “appear mentally ill” to be threatened by police and/or removed in Los Angeles. “So let’s imagine that you’re unhoused and you’re waiting at the bus stop. Simple. Right? You’re not bothering anybody. You’re not hurting anybody. But someone gets it in their head to say, ‘Hey, this person is mentally ill.’”

In contrast to claims that such initiatives represent a compassionate response to poverty and houselessness, Henderson called anti-camping ordinances like 41.18 “soft fascism.” “Death and sanctioned violence should not be the solution for getting people to get help, because that’s not helping, that’s control and that’s violence.”

“I’ve heard the now ejected council member Nuri Martinez say: ‘We need to offer a carrot and a stick.’ These policies are not a damn stick, but a stone to stone people into accepting dangerous and incompatible services.”

“You’re basically putting your foot on the neck while they’re down, that’s your solution,” he added. “That’s what you feel is going to make sure people magically get off of substances, magically make people ‘sane,’ acceptable by society. When I say quiet fascism, this is what I mean.”

Henderson is clear that despite claims of empathy and care, these laws are about removing visible signs of homelessness and poverty from the streets. “They are definitely working at trying to penalize and imprison people that they claim have mental health issues, or even if they don’t. It’s just a way to remove them from sight. And that’s what’s so alarming. People don’t understand this is not about people not wanting to get help. It’s about them trying to target unhoused people because the Olympics are coming here.”

Questionable Legality

During a press conference following his November 29 announcement, Mayor Adams said: “This is not a new law. We are going to properly define and carry out the existing law and then partner with our partners in Albany to see what we need to correct.”

Ruth Lowenkron, director of the Disability Justice program at NYLPI, told Mad in America that the Adams proposal is “very confusing.”

“He’s saying, ‘All I’m doing is what the law allows,’” Lowenkron said. “But then he suggests that requiring a showing of dangerousness is a myth. And that’s not what the law says. The law does say, of course, that you have to have a showing of dangerousness. So it’s a little hard to pick out what he’s saying…What certainly appears to be happening is a loosening of standards and an assumption about who can and can’t take care of their basic needs.”

Lowenkron said it was still too early to determine what legal challenges the Adams Administration might face. She referenced a currently pending class-action lawsuit, Baerga v. City of New York, which accuses the city of violating individuals’ rights by sending cops to respond to people in mental health crises.

According to NYLPI’s website, “The plaintiffs include people who were arrested simply for having a mental health diagnosis—or even just being perceived as having a mental health diagnosis—and who were not a harm to themselves or others, but were nevertheless forcibly strapped to gurneys or otherwise restrained and taken against their will to a hospital.” In the context of that lawsuit, NYLPI has requested further information from the Adams Administration, Lowenkron said.

First They Came for…

The pandemic only served to deepen and magnify existing inequities and injustices in the U.S. As America’s already frayed social safety net continues to unravel with no end in sight, and society becomes increasingly polarized on almost every social issue, civil liberties have come increasingly under attack. This trend can be seen not only when it comes to mental health and houselessness, but in a spate of laws and rulings restricting the rights and movements of a variety of marginalized and oppressed groups.

A glaring example is the repeal of Roe earlier this year, which made abortion illegal in 11 states and overwhelmingly impacts pregnant people of color. But this trend can also be seen in a number of recent laws sharply restricting or outlawing the rights of transgender youth to pursue and receive gender-affirming care. What all of these laws have in common is an anti-democratic othering of people who are often already on the margins of society.

Henderson said that a major part of the battle is for the public’s imagination. “It’s housed people that voted these people in for these draconian policies. We need to have that conversation and that understanding. Why is it that you have to have a villain?”

“Society does not want to make the adjustments that are necessary,” he added. “People lack the emotional intelligence, the impetus to speak out against these injustices and say, ‘Hey, this is not going to work. This is harmful to people. We’re harming people already. Let us look for solutions that are with them at the table. And not only that, let’s stop demonizing them.’”

****

Cover photo by Vesper Moore.

Clarification: As first published, the article stated that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Washington’s civil commitment laws violated the Constitution; however, the Supreme Court’s review of this case was limited to technical questions involving federal civil procedure, and not the merits of the case.

MIA Reports are supported, in part, by a grant from The Thomas Jobe Fund.

18 COMMENTS

  1. This country is terrifying, hell on earth for some like me.

    Unprosecuted criminal and retaliatory psychiatry has me facing joblessness and homelessness, at age 59, no safety net left, which means further threat of another unnecessary psychiatric lock up, maybe for the rest of my life.

    Nothing is worth the hell I have been given by my EEOC documented psychologically abusive employer, Oakland Community College, who started this mess to silence my story of workplace teacher to teacher bullying.

    Senator Ted Cruz’s daughter admits to hurting herself and apparently breezes through a psychiatric ward. She has the privilege to say she hurt herself but is not suicidal and finds herself quickly free.

    https://abcnews.go.com/US/police-called-sen-ted-cruzs-home-family-matter/story?id=94654509&fbclid=IwAR2Zpc-VT_N2f1pi1uW2K2BOh8gQITnu2y5korLTLA8hgPS_a3SAA–sXyY

    https://www.tiktok.com/@_caro_iguess_/video/7174635313111960878

    And the rest of us?

    This country is a sewer.

  2. There should be federal law about psychiatric detention equally applied to all Americans.

    This issue was made mine, on February 22, 2013, when EEOC documented psychologically abusive employer Oakland Community College after almost a year of escalating abuse, suicide swatted me, the Livonia Police through sexism and poor training completely botched an unneeded welfare check, and calamity ensued, as my higher ed mind rape Larry Nassar, HR lawyer William MacQueen, could count on, due to the mess of psychiatry. The Catholics who were allowed to raised me also grossly violated the state mental health code, at Trinity Health in Livonia, Michigan, which also something that can be counted upon, as I have learned through ten years of research. For the millionth time: I was NOT evaluated by Dr Andrew Muzychka in the emergency room, not at 11:30 am with first year student intern Nicole Shattuck, or at 1:00 pm, without her. St. Mary Merciless human trafficking mental ward broke the law and then tried to cover up, as the three distinct sets of medical records released prove. There are no medical records from Dr. Andrew Muzychka, because, as I have claimed for a decade, we have never met.

    Ted Cruz’s daughter, 14 (on Tik Tok) “No, it had nothing to do with my sexuality or my father. I’m not suicidal but I am experiencing some mental issues,” she said, noting she’s “working through it and getting the help I need. Thank you so much for all the support and love, it means a lot to me. But the most traumatizing part of this experience is how public it’s been.”

    Dear Ted Cruz’s daughter,

    Well, good news! You are okay, you say, and it could be worse, young woman, please realize when you are ready.

    You are very lucky to be hospitalized immediately and receive support, as you express. You are very lucky to have a platform and an automatic audience to which you can claim that you apparently did hurt yourself but are not suicidal. How long were you hospitalized, I wonder and frankly may deserve to know on some level, as a citizen who was also detained, but against my will, and state law. This black hole of no federal law is a situation that your father could and one day should be forced to vote upon.

    Have they given you a label from the DSM? Do you know about the full history of psychiatry? Do you realize that since there is no biological test to determine any so called mental health disorder, that any labels they may have given you are based 100% on accumulated bias, the very same bias that gives the world sexism, homophobias and colonialist racism? Meaning the facts that women have been slow to be seen as leaders in government, religions are still given a pass to hate and discriminate LGBTQ people, from our own conservative SCOTUS even, and people all over the globe are still trying to overcome slavery and oppression are together not seven steps of separation distinct from whatever label they may have given you.

    Have they drugged you? Be sure to review the archives at Mad in America regarding all drugs they may have given you. That’s a great receptacle, like a library of scientific papers, professionals and patient testimonials. Some of the most promising advances seem to include peer therapy. But make sure you know all the side effects of psychiatric pharma, reflect on the known placebo effect, and really think before you rely on Big Pharma.

    Notice how NO ADVERTISEMENTS show people locked up in a psychiatric ward. When I was locked up, the place was a horror show, with little in the way of so-called therapy. Unsupervised coloring with poor supplies was a main pastime, as well as hunting for doctors to ask for release. I wonder what your experience was like. Hopefully, it was better.

    Honestly, it is very difficult for a seasoned adult to believe you have not been coached in your statement. Oh, I see you admit that you are reading a script. That’s a nice human touch, thank you.

    I hope you are able to locate, listen and love your inner voice.

    Please realize you are getting special treatment not afforded to most, which is perhaps more critical than any negative media attention, which I am sure is unwelcome, in your case.

    Without the attention, would you receive as much support?

    Others who have hurt themselves could find themselves locked up for a long time against their wishes in a place that hurts instead of helps.

    Best wishes, from a victim of unprosecuted criminal and retaliatory psychiatry.

      • I don’t blame you, Gina. The NY Times has a very pro psychiatry slant, among other faults.
        The article was pretty disturbing, enough so that I didn’t finish it. The author is very sympathetic to Torrey, I guess because he had a sister with “mental illness”. Apparently his life’s work has been to remove people’s rights “for their own good”, so he’s very excited about the new “policy”. The cohort that complains about the “mentally ill dying with their rights on” can celebrate now, since people will be dying with their rights off with the new fascist policies.

        • I can feel a large number of privileged persons in NYC, Wash DC and LA, well educated, with white collar jobs, maybe art world gigs, who have been medicated for years, who rely on Big Pharma, or old school psychiatry, or who have a relative (let the relative speak!!!!!), who stand in the way of real progress.

          I am guessing the comments were even worse than the article, with hundreds of people who might vote like I do, who I might otherwise not like as people, even liberal leaning people.

          Watched Neflix Take Your Pills docs on xanax and adderall. The younger generation is on uppers, the old school liberals are on cocktails of god knows what.

          Trumpers on one side, nasty self serving liberals on the other, no relief in between.

          Liberals in the teachers union threw me under the bus and know I am being tortured by retaliatory psychiatry these ten years, ten years, but do not give a crap as long as they see their automatic deposits.

  3. I find this move from the New York “Major” quite offensive, on so many counts:
    1) He’s categorizing behavior, in contrast to those enforcing or causing homelessness, of people quite non violent as being a danger, when it’s more those causing the homelessness. I also don’t see it “crazy” would someone think that there is adequate room for shelter and it should be available actually displaying that it isn’t and should be. Space being available; and it wouldn’t cause much of a compromise in reality. And yet the ideology of “I own this because I have suffered,” or “I own this because I have played the game and associate happiness with such hip hop sterility,” that is excuse to despise people who in reality will end up having more of an experience of life that no one can take away from them. Some things you can’t buy.
    2) I don’t know anything regarding his political stance, whether he’s from one party or the other, or which side of either he’s on (unfortunately the majority is two parties which mostly lean against each other, using the push against them from the other side to create an arch that ends up being a monopoly edging out any other party, both can be seen as adding up to a business” or “corporate” party); but this token stance of a minority making way to get points from a system rewarding him for leaving the very minority status used as a predatory badge to be exploited by those looking for another badge to ignore the rest, this is quite revolting.
    3) He evokes descriptions of people standing at the street corner, ranting and raving (you’ve all seen them he says), air boxing, etc. and then makes out he has any idea of what’s going on with them. It’s not the psychiatric industry doping them up so badly they have such ticks, it’s not that their story was never heard (which he displays denial of) and it’s not that they are frustrated because the system is unfair. And again their story isn’t heard. Perhaps their story is heard, by something greater than this ability to lock people up in “asylums,” and call it an asylum, which it isn’t. Look up the definition.

    There were times in my life when I could have ended up, or saw the tendency to end up spouting out at a street corner, or just plain shouting, ranting and raving. But I had music in my life. I knew I had to do something that would ease the tension building up, or I would explode. A simple computer with an electronic keyboard that would put notes into a program: and I had something to do with my fingers, my brain, my ears, my eyes reading the notes to hear them in another dimension… a reason to breath, a place for emotions that just were there without being told to behave, and could imbue life into the vibrations traveling through the air called sound. It was water to a parched plant. Dreams for Joseph whose brothers despised him calling him “The Dreamer” or in our terminology “crazy” because he believed such had value. Anyone could end up walking around homeless, not knowing who they are….. Something or someone other people don’t value: A homeless person… someone or something in need of a home, an asylum, a place to be there. What is an asylum? What’s going on in the “asylums,” homeless people are forced into? Are they being helped? Could it be that the soul needs music or art, or simply the legroom for its emotions to be there, EVEN when you don’t know what you’re doing yet……EVEN when what you do isn’t awarded a place in “society….!?” Could it be that people have experiences they just need to talk about, to be listened to, to work out, to not feel it intrudes on “society” or even their own sanity when they have experienced stuff that falls outside of “normal” “societal” interactions? Is it healing when you are telling a person there’s something wrong with their brain, when in reality the treatment causes that very phenomenon? When that creates which by now would be more of a pandemic than a lessening, does this mean you need more “authority” to enforce what doesn’t work? Is this the truth when you had good intentions but were so sure of it you were scared to see the actual results, which might force you to change your approach? Is it OK to lie for money and a lifestyle, or just money? Or “economic” territory? Or “power?”

    An added note: “But this trend can also be seen in a number of recent laws sharply restricting or outlawing the rights of transgender youth to pursue and receive gender-affirming care. ” What is gender affirming care? Whatever gender or genitalia anyone is born with shouldn’t ever be reason that they aren’t allowed, aren’t welcome, or can’t be happy with whatever behavior the other, or any other gender exhibits. And to make the ability to express such diversity dependent on what kind of genitalia or biological make up you have, and thus promote the idea that happiness or the ability to express such diversity would come from changing your biological makeup, which in doing so actually limits diversity to something only accomplished with said change, I can’t say that that’s necessarily gender affirming care. It’s QUITE possible that a person would be more happy were they strengthened with the idea that they can behave however they feel makes them happy, and that both sides affirming what a man is, and what a woman is might be restricting such freedom of behavior, and it might be that neither side defining what is a man and what is a woman resonate with such freedom. You can’t be thus unless you have that, or if I have that, you can’t be thus is not necessarily helpful on either side…. Also “gender,” “male,” and “female,” are all words…. just in case you want to go beyond the redundant: “in the beginning was the word….” Further more, as yet the
    “medical” establishment can’t successfully “perform” a sex change operation to create a “female” that can give birth, or a “male” that can give her “his” side of the material necessary. To read about a woman wanting to be a male, having her breasts removed, and then later deciding she wants a child, at what point was this not brought up that wanting a child later other than “medical” attention was granted in the interim, and having her breasts removed would prevent her from nursing the child. And the whole other list of problems when a person has lost fertility, has acquired other damage, can’t reverse the process when or would they change their mind, or children born with sexual organs not denoting either sex who then have their parents told they should surgically be changed to one or the other, and this being done before they can decide for themselves have to deal with having more orientation for the other: surgeries performed because otherwise they can’t have a “normal” childhood. WHY does it HAVE TO BE “one or the other?” Why is THAT seen as gender affirming care?

    It might just be that once again, someone deciding that they need “medical” attention gets points consequently, while others wanting something else don’t; while the drug companies and the medical establishment get the profits, just like this scourge of the homeless who for some reason don’t all go marching to the mental health system to get fixed up. And now are FURTHER harassed that there’s something wrong with them. I’m not saying that anyone that has become dependent on “standard” gender affirmative care should just be thrown out in the gutter, or even that they aren’t a minority, or that they don’t deserve to be acknowledged and have help and care. But there might be a greater minority already in the gutter because they didn’t vie for fitting into one of the slots approved of that comes with “medical” attention. And they again are pushed to the side.

  4. They could do what our Chief Psychiatrist has done in my State (and without the need for parliamentary approval for changes to our laws)….. that is, make everyone citizen an “Outpatient” and then you don’t need to worry about standards being met for incarcerations and forced druggings.

    A Community Nurse just calls police and tells them whose house to meet him at, and they go and get the person they want to lock up and drug.

    There are laws that create the appearance of protections for the community, but the person charged with enforcing them doesn’t know what they are. The Chief Psychiatrists legal knowledge doesn’t extend to an understanding of a burden of proof as mentioned in the above article.

    If the public officers concerned fabricate what appears to be “reasonable grounds” on the statutory declarations, he won’t bother checking the validity of the document, simply utter with the known fraud. Care to see his letter? “the grounds stated on the Form 1 are considered to be reasonable grounds”……. it would be silly of the Community Nurse to forge the reasonable grounds and they NOT appear to be reasonable right? I know it’s not really a $50 note, but if I spend it they won’t be able to prove I knew 🙂 It’s called uttering.

    Just kidding, that letter was forged and uttered with by the lawyers at the Mental Health Law Centre. And it’s not like the Police are going to do much about them committing serious criminal offences that benefit the State, and allow arbitrary detentions and torture.

    Beyond a reasonable doubt the standard for dangerousness? Our ‘Chief Psychiatrist’ would reword that as Beyond a doubt mental health practitioners believe to be reasonable, which could be basically anything they like when the objective “criteria” set out in law no longer apply and become subjective interpretations that can not be tested using logic and reasoning (you know, like the lawyers we used to have trained in? These days it’s emptying wallets and throw them under a bus training.)

    And I wonder what is being done about “Voluntary Assisted Dying” legislation? I know that our new laws are in their infancy, but I can see great benefits to the State (particularly if we can get the forced sterilisation without parental consent clause of the Mental Health Act through) with the ability to subvert the “more than 100 legal protections” with “editing” of legal narrative before any ‘authorised person’ gets the opportunity to check the documents.

    Lawyers who, for a fee, will not be “over zealous” about examining the unredacted/unedited version of reality. Where there’s a will, ………….there’s relatives.

    I mean what’s the difference between a set of documents showing a citizen was ‘spiked’ with date rape drugs, snatched from his bed, arbitrarily detained and tortured for 7 hours and a set of documents showing a mental “Outpatient” of ten years being taken into custody and force drugged with a ‘chemical restraint’ as a result of being a violent psychotic drug abusing wife beater?

    “Editing”

    And the legal protections allowing a legal representative the right to examine unredacted documents to protect human rights? They ensure they don’t obtain the documents showing the human rights abuses, and leave the victims to be ‘treated’ for attempting to access the protection of the law and their human rights.

    Trust in haste, regret at leisure. I mean when the ‘human rights advocates’ are actively concealing human rights abuses by conspiring with the State to conceal the abuses, what chance do the community have? despite ratifying the Convention, they are ensuring no avenue for complaint by denying access to legal representation.

  5. “’The forces generating homelessness don’t come from ‘failed’ Housing First programs,’ he told Mad in America'”.

    No, they come from the fiscally irresponsible globalist banking thievery system, that “stole trillions of houses,” from innocent American families.

    https://www.newsclick.in/unsealed-court-settlement-documents-reveal-banks-stole-trillions-worth-houses

    “You’re basically putting your foot on the neck while they’re down, that’s your solution” – and that is largely psychiatry’s systemic “solution,” to all of life’s inevitable and systemic problems, and injustices.

  6. The second -to-highest recommended comment on the NY Times E Fuller Torrey article (scary stuff):

    “I sit here reading this, a retired clinical psychologist, recalling so many family members, distraught because yet again their (son, daughter, father, husband, wife… etc.) was “who knows where” – psychotic, delusional, homicidal etc. and couldn’t I please “do something” to help them?” They were frantic. I was concerned. And it all was traceable back to an inability to provide compassionate protection for the mentally ill person and society. In one case both parents were mental health professionals, taking turns to ensure that the family member remained safely at home. In other words, having to take time off work – just to ensure themselves the safety of their relative. To prevent suicide, homicide or some type of social or criminal activity. Calling the police does little good if the mentally ill person can feign sanity long enough. Even courts will let them go if they can manage to convince a judge they are sane at that moment. Think how many of these mass murders might have been prevented. All because psychiatric wards and facilities were closed. In effect, “there was no room in the inn” as the Bible records. I thank the Times for running this article. On a Sunday when people are more likely to read. We live in a nation where there is no medical care or mental health care for tens of millions. Where money is sent to billionaires instead of funding care for our brethren – who wander the streets, act out their crazy thoughts, live lives of inner torture.”

    • For someone to completely not see how homicidal (the loss of life, the creation of chemical imbalances in the name of healing them, the disabling of brains to never be able to figure out what was going on with them so that recovery can take place), and then delusional (you’re creating an epidemic, adding to that doesn’t stop it; you’re CAUSING chemical imbalance and lying to people about it), and then psychotic (if this means non-reality based, that’s also quite abundant see former points),and then use THIS sentence: “I sit here reading this, a retired clinical psychologist, recalling so many family members, distraught because yet again their (son, daughter, father, husband, wife… etc.) was “who knows where” – psychotic, delusional, homicidal etc. and couldn’t I please “do something” to help them?” They were frantic.” and then follow it with “I was concerned” without any concern for the truth enough to see it in front of their eyes? I think there are a lot of abused people that would rather be “who knows where,” then with their abusers.

    • Yeah, It’s scary, all right. But, that quack has a point – just not the point he thinks he has.

      In fact, there IS a high probability of violence from one of the thousands of unhoused Mad New Yorkers who are soon to be targeted by Adams’ “plan” to drag them off the streets, cage them, and drug them. There’s only so much a person can take and the people Adams intends to hunt down have already been stripped of pretty much everything. If their law-abiding lives – sustained through some of the WORST injustice America has ever seen – aren’t enough to keep them free, some of them will decide to punish our #shithole society. And, society will deserve it.

  7. There are laws like the first time they force someone to take meds it’s assault & battery and the second time it’s attempted murder. There’s the law that says you can’t have unlawful carnal knowledge of someone. Therefore, you can’t know things about someone or know them against their will in the USA. They’ve hidden the written legislation from the internet atleast but it still stands. Forcing someone to get health care means you violated these laws. In TN in 1943, they wrote down that mental asylum are always illegal bc political criminals and criminals in general use them to their advantage. They also wrote labotomies are illegal. They had to reprint it every 2 years as the criminals get into the documents abd dispose if them or edit them. People who work in these document housing places have to do that (write down specifics about the way the law works in America). We don’t understand why we have to have it writing. Just incase we did and do. But they are doing the exact opposite. They can’t outlaw public camping and vagrants rarely applies as a charge. We could always go back to executing the criminals in the streets. This is a country where your rights stop where someone else’s start. Even tho we have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness they can’t make that their right only as criminals. We are at war now in this country and have been. They are not to incarcerate people, have court, or arrest people at all. The citizens are the cops. They have the right to bear arms and it cannot be denied. There is no argument you can make or its conspiracy to commit in a court of law. No If, ands, or buts.

  8. “She voiced fears that her Black and Brown unhoused neighbors would be further targeted under the new guidance. “If a homeless person just puts up their arm and says, ‘No, don’t,’ that’s considered ‘resistance,’” she said. “‘They’re ‘decompensating.’ They were ‘violent.’ They were ‘aggressive.’ This is more of a green light to just take people in.””

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKSBKzscSao

    I was told that being unconscious is considered “passively resisting arrest” as shown in this video. Still, it’s not like a ‘black fella’ is going to complain about having his skull fractured to a doctor whilst in custody. That’d be “reasonable grounds” for referral to mental health for ‘treatments’. And should he die in custody? I assume the documents can be “edited” before the ‘Legal Service’ gets a look right?

    It was also interesting how this footage came to be in the hands of the corruption watchdog…… all efforts made to ensure that didn’t happen.

    I also note the enduring homophobia in the Police Service. “Nice face, c*&^t…. you punch like a faggot”. Tell that to Orlando Cruz lol