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Governments Drugging Children With Psychotropic Drugs

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Lukes Dad's picture
on Thu, 06/07/2012 - 09:09
Fight Child Protection Department Corruption: 
Governments Drugging Children With Psychotropic Drugs

“My studies in this area lead me to a very uncomfortable conclusion: Our citizens would be far better off if we removed all the psychotropic drugs from the market, as doctors are unable to handle them. It is inescapable that their availability creates more harm than good.”

- Peter Gøtzsche, MD;  Co-founder of the Cochrane Collaboration

Sources for Deadly Medicines and Organised Crime: How Big Pharma Has Corrupted Health Care:

An investigation into DCF foster children being given dangerous drugs has the agency on the defense

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- 10 News' story on psychotropic drugs being given to young kids in the state welfare system is causing quite a stir both here in the Bay area and throughout the state.

As the story explained, a child in the Department of Children and Families' custody is three times more likely to get psychotropic drugs than other children. A Government Accountability Office study shows, using the most recent figures, that Medicaid spent more than $64,000,000 on drugs for kids in foster care in Florida.

In addition, the investigation shows many young children were given these meds even though the label says they should not be given to children under 12 years old.

10 News received calls from parents who said they went through the same experience as the parents in our story. They told us of their children being put on these drugs without their knowledge or permission. One DCF caseworker told us our story "hit just the tip of the iceberg and the drugs are often given to kids who have experienced trauma in their home life, trauma in being removed from the home, and then act out."

The caseworker explained some foster parents asked for the drugs to calm down the kids in the system and the doctors often go along.

On Facebook, Naria Mangicaro wrote, "Thank you for calling attention to the overuse of psych meds on children in foster care."

Claudia Roush wrote, "One of the reasons they give these drugs to these kids is to keep them calm and under control. What a joke!!!!"

We heard from child advocates who say they have been fighting DCF on this issue for years to no avail.

State Senator Ronda Storms (R) has introduced legislation to tighten the controls on DCF before it allows a child in foster care to get psychotropic drugs. She told us our story was on the money and will be helpful in getting her bill through the legislature. It comes up for a hearing in front of a Senate panel on February 9.

However, not everyone was happy with our story. DCF Communications Director Joe Follick sent an e-mail to 10 News management blasting our story, citing what he called "dubious choices of sources." We can only assume that includes Senator Storms.

He went on to say, "I am requesting that in the future neither (producer) Tony D'Astoli or Mike Deeson work on stories associated with DCF."

I can guarantee that won't happen. We will continue to push the agency to find out why it allows these drugs to be given to small children. We will push to find out why a caseworker lied in order to get a doctor to prescribe the drugs without telling the parents and why the agency is taking a CYA stance instead of addressing a major societal problem in our state.

Mike Deeson



Lukes Dad's picture

LEGISLATIVE MEETING: Youths and graduates of the system offer alternatives.


Before a roomful of important adults, foster kids and graduates of the system talked about being put on powerful psychiatric drugs and undergoing "treatment" when what might have helped more was a chance for a regular life with sports and clubs and jobs.
Friday's day-long legislative meeting drew a number of state officials, lawmakers and advocates, and focused on how to improve Alaska foster care.
In May, a group of foster care youth and those who have aged out came up with eight ways to improve the system. Among the identified problems: Overprescribed psychiatric drugs.
Too many foster children are prescribed psychiatric drugs, the kids said. They are labeled as disturbed, defiant or anxious when in reality they are just reacting to the trauma of their broken families and the difficulties of living in state custody.
Candice Tucker remembered when she first went into foster care two years ago, at age 15, because her mother couldn't take care of her.
"I was freaking out because I had just gotten into care. I was having a hard time so they thought I needed residential," Tucker, now 17, said.
For her, the treatment center helped, but she questions all the drugs doctors put her on.
"There are natural things in life that stress you out. You get depressed. You get sad or you get angry or anxious. They are natural emotions. I feel being in foster care and being on as many anti-psychotics and anti-depressants that I've been on -- they see me for a week and they assume that's the way I've always been," Tucker said, her voice soft but her manner open. Later she explained that she's shy, but wants to make life better for other foster children if she can.
Now, as she's preparing to start at the University of Alaska Anchorage in January, Tucker wants to ease off the powerful medications.
"I need to have my mind with me. I need to be alert," she said.
Slade Martin is 20 now, but he spent 15 years in Alaska's foster care system and shuffled through, by his count, 21 different foster homes, emergency placements and treatment centers. He once was treated at a local psychiatric hospital and said every kid there is put on psychiatric drugs.
The kids want the medications cut back and think that will help them focus better on school and function better in the world.
"I don't think meds are always the best option," Martin said.
Counseling is traumatic to some kids -- telling your story to one stranger and then another, said Becca Shier, now 18 and a UAA student in social work who has been in foster care nearly six years.
Some, like her, will never open up. Instead of making them feel like something is wrong with them, Shier told the legislators, why not get them involved in extra curricular activities so they can be part of a regular school experience?
"So they could be normal."
Teens in foster care too often end up in treatment centers because the state has no other home for them; they are the "foster homeless," Shier said.
Martin said he spent 2 1/2 years at an Anchorage treatment center because no foster family would take him in. "Some crazy people up in there," he told legislators.
He said he was "diagnosed with everything under the rainbow" but doesn't think anything was really wrong with him. Other kids stabbed people and punched holes in the walls and were scary, he said during a break.
Tammy Sandoval, director of the state Office of Children's Services, said later that she was taken with what the youths had to say. The idea of kids spending months or years in residential treatment centers for lack of a family is troubling and she wants to look into the matter.
But the fact is, the state doesn't have enough foster homes, especially for teenagers, she said.
Sandoval said she planned to discuss the medication issues with the state's director of behavioral health.
The foster kids and alumni at the meeting are especially articulate and successful, said state Rep. Les Gara, an Anchorage Democrat who grew up in foster care in New York state and was one of the main organizers of Friday's session. Foster kids too often struggle in school, end up homeless and are unemployed as young adults, according to studies presented at the meeting.
The kids who spoke Friday have been finding their voice through an advocacy group called Facing Foster Care in Alaska that now numbers about 140 statewide, said its president, Amanda Metivier, who at 24 helped organize the conference and is weeks away from graduating from UAA with a social work degree.
She'll be one of the first to graduate on a special tuition waiver specifically for foster kids. The foster care group wants all foster kids to be offered that benefit. Now just 10 foster kids a year get that at UAA.
At their May meeting, they also agreed to push for Medicaid health benefits to age 21, Medicaid-paid braces, and money to help older foster kids live on their own.
But state Sen. Johnny Ellis, an Anchorage Democrat at the meeting, said even sympathetic legislators may have trouble getting new programs into the state budget with the recent dramatic drop in the price of oil.

whiteLion's picture

quote from above: "But state Sen. Johnny Ellis, an Anchorage Democrat at the meeting, said even sympathetic legislators may have trouble getting new programs into the state budget with the recent dramatic drop in the price of oil."


What does the price of oil have to do with a childs life?

Or anyone's life?

Are we all missing something here?

Lukes Dad's picture

NEW YORK – From the moment news emerged Friday that a young man had carried out a horrific massacre of elementary-school children, politicians from local city halls to the White House have been restoking the age-old push for more gun control. While guns have been a common denominator in mass slayings at schools by teens, there’s another familiar element that seems increasingly to be minimized.

Some 90 percent of school shootings over more than a decade have been linked to a widely prescribed type of antidepressant called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or SSRIs, according to British psychiatrist Dr. David Healy, a founder of, an independent website for researching and reporting on prescription drugs.

Though there has been no definitive confirmation that drugs played a role in the Newtown, Conn., assault, that killed 20 children and six adults, media have cited family members and acquaintances saying suspect Adam Lanza was taking prescription medication to treat “a neurological-development disorder,” possibly Aspergers.

Healy cautioned that the public needs “to wait to find out what Adam Lanza was on, and whether his behavior does fit the template of a treatment-induced problem.”

However, in an email to WND, he said he suspected prescribed psychiatric medications was the cause of Lanza’s violent behavior.

Healy said that while the public waits to learn more about Lanza, there are two general points that can be made.

First, he said, “psychotropic drugs of pretty well any group can trigger violence up to and including homicide.”

“Second, the advocates of treatment claim both that it is the illness and not the drugs that causes violence and that we are leaving huge numbers of people untreated.”

But Healy argued that if this were the case, “we should not find that comfortably over 90 percent of school shootings are linked to medication intake.”

Dr. Peter R. Breggin, a Harvard-trained psychiatrist and former full-time consultant at the National Institute of Mental Health, told WND it’s likely that problems for Lanza began with “getting tangled up” with psychiatric medicine.

Breggin insisted there has been overwhelming scientific evidence for decades correlating psychiatrically prescribed drugs with violence.

Writing in Ethical Human Sciences and Services, a peer-reviewed scholarly journal, in 2003, Breggin concluded SSRI drugs could be a factor in suicide, violence and other forms of extreme abnormal behavior, as evidenced in case reports, controlled clinical trials, and epidemiological studies in children and adults.

Since the 1970s, Breggin has testified in approximately 100 trials, including one in which Judge Robert Heinrichs ruled the adverse effects of taking Prozac drove a 16-year-old in Winnipeg, Canada, to commit an unprovoked murder.

Breggin appeared before the Veterans Affairs Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010 in support of his 2008 book “Medication Madness: The Role of Psychiatric Drugs in Cases of Violence, Suicide and Crime.”

Breggin testified to Congress that research conducted in the medical science demonstrates a causal relationship between antidepressant drugs and the production of suicide, violence, mania and other behavioral abnormalities.

He warned Congress of the risks of giving these drugs to heavily armed young men and women in the military.

Mainstream religion

Breggin asserted that establishment media “ignores the scientific evidence linking psychiatric medications and violent behavior because psychiatry is the religion of the mainstream media, and they don’t want to see the dangers of psychiatrically prescribed drugs.”

“Besides, the drug companies also have incredible influence through advertising such that they can call the shots,” he said.

He believes the Lanza case fits the pattern of school shooters in some of the most famous incidents in recent memory, including the 1999 shootings at Columbine High School in Colorado and the massacre at Virginia Tech in 2007.

“Adam Lanza has in common with many of the young men who were shooters that they were outsiders who lived in the shadows, who deal with a lot of shame, humiliation and isolation,” Breggin explained.

He calls the psychiatric diagnoses “worthless.”

“We know exactly who they are,” he said. “They are called ‘geeky’ in the extreme. Not a single one has ever come forward with a close friend. They are alienated from their families, and they have been involved in psychiatry.”

Breggin insists that instead of psychiatric treatment, children of this kind need “more reaching out, more socialization, more caring, more involvement.”

“Our schools, our families, and our communities need to be aware of the kids who are withdrawn and violent, not because they are going to become violent – hardly any of them are going to become violent – but because these are really hurt kids,” he said.

“We can call them evil, we can call them mentally ill, but the pattern is really quite clear,” Breggin continued. “They are highly intelligent and highly withdrawn and they are all involved with psychiatry, so the claim psychiatry is going to do some good is really ridiculous.”

In many school shootings carried out by minors, court documents are sealed and the extent of chemical use is unknown to the public.

But in a number of high-profile cases, the link has been reported:

  • Kip Kinkel was withdrawing from Prozac and had been prescribed Ritalin when he murdered his mother and stepfather then shot 22 classmates, killing two, in 1998.
  • Christopher Pittman was withdrawing from Luvox and from Paxil when he killed his paternal grandparents in 2001.
  • Elizabeth Bush, who fired at fellow students in Williamsport, Pa., in 2001, wounding one, was on Prozac.
  • Jason Hoffman, was on Effexor and Celexa when he opened fire at his El Cajon, Calif., high school, wounding five.
  • Shawn Cooper of Notus, Idaho, was on antidepressants when he fired a shotgun on students and staff.
  • T.J. Solomon, on antidepressants, wounded six at his Conyers, Ga., high school.
  • Eric Harris was taking Luvox when he and fellow student Dylan Klebold killed 12 students and a teacher and wounded 24 others before turning their guns on themselves at Columbine High School in Colorado.
  • At Virginia Tech in 2007, where 32 were murdered, authorities found “prescription medications related to the treatment of psychological problems had been found among Mr. Cho’s effects,” according to the New York Times.

“Violence and other potentially criminal behavior caused by prescription drugs are medicine’s best kept secret,” Healy said in a statement last month. “Never before in the fields of medicine and law have there been so many events with so much concealed data and so little focused expertise.”

In the past six years, Healy has authored two best-selling books analyzing the degree to which the pharmaceutical industry has influenced medical doctors to prescribe antidepressant drugs to patients with psychiatric problems: “Let Them Eat Prozac: The Unhealthy Relationship Between the Pharmaceutical Industry and Depression,” in 2006 and “Pharmageddon” in 2012.

Recently, Healy’s added a “violence section” to its website, allowing users to enter the name of a prescription drug to find out the side effects recorded in the more than 4 million adverse drug event reports filed with the FDA since 2004.

Was Lanza on meds?

Writing for Monday, Emily Willingham was quick to warn against demonizing Asperger’s syndrome, or autism in general, as the cause of Lanza’s violence. Likewise, in a New York magazine piece titled “Asperger’s is a Red Herring to Explain the Newtown Massacre,” Adam Martin wrote, “As the nation sets out to understand how Friday’s massacre came to pass, some are rightly worried that the high-functioning form of autism will become unfairly stigmatized.”

Nevertheless, credible sources have not withdrawn published claims that Lanza was on prescribed psychiatric medication at the time of the shooting.

On CBS’s “60 Minutes” Sunday, Mark and Louise Tambascio, friends of the shooter’s mother, Nancy Lanza, said Adam Lanza was being medicated for Asperger’s.

“I know [Adam Lanza] was on medication and everything, but she homeschooled him at home cause he couldn’t deal with the school classes sometimes,” Louise Tambascio told CBS reporter Scott Pelley. “So she just homeschooled Adam at that home. And that was her life.”

Her comment followed Mark Tambascio explaining to Scott Pelley that “friends told us that [Asperger's syndrome] did dominate the Lanzas’ lives.”

In addition, the Washington Post reported over the weekend an unnamed former neighbor of Nancy and Adam Lanza in Newtown, Conn., recalled Adam as “a really rambunctious kid” who “was on medication.”

The story became confused when a now discredited source claiming to be Adam Lanza’s “Uncle Jonathan” told several publications, including the Sun in the United Kingdom, that Adam was being treated with the strong anti-psychotic drug Fanapt.

Later reports found no relatives who knew “Uncle Jonathan.”

Separately, law enforcement officers have found evidence Lanza played graphically violent video games, the Hartford Courant reported on Sunday.

The Express in the United Kingdom reported Monday that Lanza had “an unhealthy obsession for violent video games” and that his favorite video game was said to be a “shockingly violent” fantasy war game called Dynasty Warriors, which is “thought to have given him inspiration to act on his darkest thoughts.”

by Jerome R. Corsi

i want my 3 kids back's picture

my son is turning 7 on wednesday and has been in care since he was 18 months my younger son is with him docs has told the carer to get check ups for my sons and i was told my older son has atism and my younger one has adhd my older son is on ritalin and catapress and is meant to help my son sleep but he is up all night the carer has just up and gave my younger son the pills without asking the doctor. yes my sons are very accctive buut what she tells me and how they are with me are 2 different storys. no one in the familes has autism so how could he get it? im worried for both my boys because i dont think children should be on those meds can someone help me and tell me if they "muck up" cause they have these disability's or is it cause they were taking from me. my son has nightmares and only tells me about it but he only has nightmares at the house he lives in and no where else. no one asked me if i wanted them on medication so can docs just up and give kids dangerous meds like ritalin and catapress?


Lukes Dad's picture

So sorry to hear about your children being drugged up in foster care. Which office are you dealing with, and is there a foster care agency?

Abused and Murdered Baby Angels's picture

First of all how did the Dr diagnose your older son as having autism? And how was your younger son diagnosed with ADHD? How were your boys tested? Is there any proof? Also I recently read on an official Docs site that Docs workers can actually be licensed and certified to make the decision that a foster child should be on meds! This is horrible because these Docs workers have no experience or knowledge whatsoever about medications and their side effects. They always seem to suggest that these kids are autistic or ADHD. I've seen too many times that these kids are all put on the Ritalin for the ADHD and the catapress to help calm and bring the body down from the Ritalin. If your son isn't sleeping he may be on too high if a dose of Ritalin or maybe it's not being given to him early enough in the morning. I do not like any child being given catapress because it is actually used to lower blood pressure, but in smaller doses it causes drowsiness. I would definitely see if you could find out how they were diagnosed, (what sort of testing was used, and check to see if the doses of the meds are not too high.