News stories from Counterpoint
Counterpoint Summer 2019 • News • Page 9 RUTLAND – Counterpoint readers called in with some strong reactions to the winter poll question that asked, “Should bathrooms be locked on a psych ward based on safety concerns?” Of the 12 who responded by phone message, only...read more
Counterpoint Summer 2019 • News • Page 1 MONTPELIER – The legislature passed a bill in May that requires a 24-hour waiting period for purchase of a handgun after a debate that included questions about whether there was a right to suicide, as well as the degree to...read more
Counterpoint Winter 2018 • News • Page 6 RUTLAND – Three psychiatric survivors shared their perspectives on their jobs as related to their own experiences with oppression in the mental health system at a panel presentation at the...read more
Counterpoint Winter 2018 • News • Page 10 WATERBURY – The Department of Mental Health has worked with Springfield Hospital for revisions to the policies for its new electroconvulsive therapy service, according to Mourning Fox, the interim commissioner. Counterpoint...read more
By Kaz DeWolfe Counterpoint Winter 2018 • Commentary • Page 20 I was getting burned out as a patient representative visiting the Brattleboro Retreat last winter. I found my conversations with patients to be mostly rewarding and mutually beneficial, but all of my...read more
By Calvin Moen Counterpoint Winter 2018 • Commentary • Page 19 I have been representing Vermont Psychiatric Survivors on a legislative study committee looking at orders of nonhospitalization, or ONHs – Vermont’s involuntary outpatient commitment laws. In simple terms,...read more
By Chris Dubey Counterpoint Winter 2018 • Commentary • Page 18 This is a true story of self-harm and psychiatric torture. I choose to have my story reprinted not only for its original value of sharing the truth about “electroconvulsive therapy,” especially forced ECT,...read more
By Robert A. Oeser Counterpoint Winter 2018 • Commentary • Page 17 This commentary is from a document provided by its author to the Brattleboro selectboard at a public hearing to discuss repeal of a “begging” ordinance – Sec. 13-2. Begging prohibited. “No person shall...read more
By Sarah Knutson Counterpoint Winter 2018 • Commentary • Page 21 My current diagnosis is “Bipolar I Disorder.” In a few years, that likely won’t exist. I might even be able to sue my clinician for not assessing – or ruling out – known biological markers of stress that...read more
Counterpoint Winter 2018 • Commentary • Page 22 Image source: https://pamelaspirowagner.com/2018/11/08/this-art-print-is-available/ By Phoebe Sparrow Wagner In May 2014, mute and psychotic, I was taken to the emergency department of Connecticut’s New Britain General...read more
Editorial Counterpoint Winter 2018 • Commentary • Page 16 An old expression says, “What you don’t know won’t hurt you.” The opposite adage states, “Knowledge is power.” For advocates – or any people trying to protect themselves – knowledge is critical. The power of...read more
At this year’s Alternatives conference in Washington, Calvin Moen, Kaz DeWolfe and I gave a presentation on the elements of psychiatric coercion that members of our community face in accessing survival benefits.
This was an effort on our part to broaden the scope of discussions that occur in the consumer/survivor/ex-patient movement to consider coercion more broadly.
All the people who attended our workshop were recipients of survival benefits and had a great deal to contribute to the discussion. They spoke to the precarious nature of life on benefits, as well as to the degree to which participation in the benefits system limits their ability to determine the conditions of their care.read more
This was my second consecutive year attending the Alternatives conference. Like last year, I distinctly felt that there were (at least) two separate conferences happening concurrently.
One of these conferences centers the experience and perspective of a user of mental health services who is in recovery from a mental illness and has joined the peer workforce to serve others who are experiencing what they have gone through.
The other conference centers the experience and perspective of a survivor of psychiatric harm who works to resist and dismantle the coercive and forceful psychiatric system and to reinstate the human and civil rights of those who have been deemed mad.read more