News: Citizens Commission on Human Rights Florida Volunteers Honored for Exposing Crimes and Protecting the People of Florida from Abuse in the Field of Mental Health | CitizenWire

CCHR Florida President Diane Stein recapped achievements

For decades, Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR) Florida has worked to restore rights and dignity in the field of mental health

CLEARWATER, Fla. /CitizenWire/ -- Hundreds gathered for a banquet to applaud the many accomplishments of Citizens Commission on Human Rights Florida volunteers and present awards to individuals for their stellar work on behalf of the people of the state and beyond. Organized by the Church of Scientology Flag Service Organization at the iconic Fort Harrison auditorium, the lavish banquet was an elegant and heartfelt tribute to the commitment, courage and hard work of the executives and volunteers of the nonprofit.

For decades, CCHR has worked to restore rights and dignity to the field of mental health by exposing crimes and enacting protections, including:

* Helping to pass legislation that requires informed consent before ECT (electroconvulsive therapy) can be administered. ECT is documented to cause brain damage and long-term memory loss. Prior to the legislation CCHR helped push through, those labeled 'mentally ill' could be forced to receive ECT in Florida without their consent. ECT administers up to 460 volts of electricity to a patient's brain.

* Exposing gross patient abuse at Anclote Manor Psychiatric Hospital. Judges gave delinquent teenage boys two choices: face prosecution for felonies resulting in a permanent record or be committed to Anclote Manor Psychiatric Hospital to receive treatment. CCHR investigated the hospital and exposed gross violations of the rights and safety of the children, including the use of insulin shock and wrapping patients in freezing sheets. CCHR held public demonstrations depicting the abuses that were leaked to CCHR by patients and staff, amassing public attention and outrage that ultimately led to the facility's closure.

* Executing a public information campaign to help parents protect their children from involuntary psychiatric commitment. CCHR organized workshops where experts on the Baker Act, the notorious Florida law that enables involuntary commitment, trained attorneys and patient advocates on how to get people released from facilities where they are held against their will.

CCHR also educates the community on the history, practices and crimes of psychiatry with its Psychiatry: An Industry of Death Museum at the group's Clearwater headquarters at 109 N. Fort Harrison Ave. in downtown Clearwater, Florida.

CCHR Florida President Diane Stein is featured in an episode of Voices for Humanity on the Scientology Network. CCHR's work to protect children from arbitrary and forced commitment is also the subject of a Voices for Humanity episode featuring Florida-based attorney Justin Drach.

Citizens Commission on Human Rights was cofounded in 1969 by professor of psychiatry Dr. Thomas Szasz and the Church of Scientology. With international headquarters in Los Angeles, California, CCHR is a global human rights advocacy network of some 180 chapters across more than 30 nations. CCHR Commissioners include physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, lawyers, legislators, government officials, educators and civil rights representatives. CCHR is inspired by author, humanitarian and Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard's commitment to abolishing any and all physically damaging practices in the field of mental health.



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