MindFreedom Ireland is a voluntarily run, psychiatric survivor-led organisation which campaigns to abolish the power of psychiatry within the present so called ‘mental health’ system, a system that denies human rights in the name of ‘care’. MindFreedom Ireland explores and promotes healing alternatives to the mainstream psychiatric model (sometimes called the ‘medical model’).
We are affiliated to MindFreedom International
Helena King, Greg White, Dr Terry Lynch, Dr. Peter Breggin and Cork Advocacy Network all played their part in the genesis of MindFreedom Ireland. It was their raising of a critical psychiatric consciousness in the early years of the new millenium that led to a connection being established with MindFreedomm International in America and its Director, David Oaks. Originally known as Support Coalition International, David Oaks had built up the organisation to be in the vanguard of the struggle for a non-violent revolution in the mental health system both in the US and around the world. A psychiatric survivor himself, David Oaks today leads a coalition of over 100 like-minded groups.
The initial contact with MindFreedom took place in September 2003 when Mary Maddock e-mailed David Oaks and began the process which led to the formation of MindFreedom Ireland. The actual birthday was December 15th, 2003 and the inaugural meeting took place in the house of Helena King in Cork. Just five people were present on that historic occasion – Helena King, Maria O’Mahony, Marguerite Gates, Mary Maddock and Jim Maddock. Vowing to be as truly democratic as possible, it was agreed that Mary Maddock, a psychiatric survivor herself, would act as a liason person with David Oaks. Today MindFreedom Ireland is an affiliate of MindFreedom International with whom we share our Mission Statement in addition to campaigning in a specifically Irish context. We reject all discriminatory psychiatric labels and work to win human rights and alternatives for people who experience emotional distress.
Our vision is a non-violent revolution in ‘mental health care’
MF Ireland Goals:
MF Ireland endeavours to promote activism, advocacy, peaceful protest, public education and mutual support. While most of us are psychiatric survivors, we are open to all who supoprt human rights including psychiatric professionals, advocates, family members and the general public.
MF Ireland is one of the very few totally independent groups in the mental health field with zero funding from the mental health system, government or drug companies.
MF Ireland supports informed choice in mental health care. Some of our members choose to take psychiatric drugs, more do not. We are united in saying ‘No’ to human rights violations by psychiatric drugging. Drug companies often use fraud to promote their products. The public is sold a myth of ‘chemical imbalance’. There is no scientific proof of a genetic or biological basis for any psychiatric diagnosis.
MF Ireland calls for a full range of voluntary, humane and safe alternatives for all who choose to use them. These options should include mutual support, jobs, housing, peer-run programmes, nutrition, advocacy, quality counselling and other more holistic approaches.
Logo By Mel O ‘Dea
I based the sign on the Cel
tic drawing that I picked up from a tourist office.
I wanted the design to be distinctively Irish.
The bird motive drew me. Birds are an image of freedom and hope and the dove is a symbol of peace.
I did the entire design myself, but the idea of using a Celtic motive came from Colette Ni Dhuinneacha.
I hope the logo symbolises freedom, hope, peace and uncoercibility and that it represents the idea that the mind can never be truly tamed!