It is with great sadness that we mark the death of our inspirational and supportive friend Greg White. From his early involvement with The Irish Council for Civil Liberties and Irish Penal Reform, Greg, along with another inspirational figure Helena King and enlightened doctor Terry Lynch, was instrumental in inspiring Mary Maddock to establish MindFreedom Ireland in 2003.
He also became Chairman of The Cork Advocacy Network while Mary Maddock was secretary and co-operated in bringing David Oaks, the Director of MindFreedom International, and other psychiatric survivors to Cork for a major conference in UCC in 2005. Since then, his wise counsel, original thinking, and active involvement with MindFreedom Ireland were always much appreciated. He stood at our electroshock protests, the first to be held in Ireland, with his self-made placard ‘Electroshock – Stunning isn’t it?’.
In 2006, he was part of a MindFreedom Ireland group, led by Nuria O Mahony along with the late Dr. Michael Corry, presented evidence to the Oireachtas Committee on Health which resulted in the publication of its report on ‘The Adverse Effect of Pharmaceuticals’. He helped to organize the first ‘Hearing Voices’ conference at the Metropole Hotel, Cork. Later, at his own expense, he organized the printing of a number of pamphlets – ‘Harm Reduction Guide to Coming Off Psychiatric Drugs’ – written by American activist Will HalI and embarked on a personal crusade distributing them throughout the country.
In 2013 he rose from his sick bed to deliver a keynote address at our 10th Anniversary Conference while he also participated in a number of Critical Voices Network Ireland conferences, the annual Cork gathering of people committed to challenging bio-psychiatry. Staunchly devoted to the human rights of people experiencing emotional distress, he was also a practicing and empathetic psychotherapist and contributed to Jerry O Mullane’s MindFreedom Ireland Documentary in 2015.
He will be greatly missed by all his friends in the movement. We extend our sympathy to Jennie and his family. We are all the poorer for his passing but equally enriched by his lasting legacy.
Easter Sunday, 2019.