National Vice President
Rebecca Noble, Vice President of Ablechild.org in Arizona secured a big win for parents by protecting their ‘right to refuse’ psychiatric drugs for their children. A new law stating that Child Protective Services (CPS) can no longer charge parents with “medical neglect” for failing to administer psychiatric drugs to their children is a victory for parents. Another bill that would have furthered parents ‘right to refuse’ psychiatric drugs for their children within schools was defeated. This defeat for the right to refuse psychiatric drugs clearly erodes parent’s rights to protect their children’s health and safety and is one more example of why ‘The Child Medication Safety Act of 2003’ is urgent on a federal level.
Last December 3, 2003 Rebecca Noble, Vice President of AbleChild.org, Arizona testified before the Arizona House of Representative, forty-sixth Legislature, in a Second Special Session, Committee on Appropriations in regards to Child Protective Services (CPS) being called on parents unwilling to harm their children by placing them on dangerous psychiatric drugs used to “treat” behavioral or attention issues. Senate Bill 1009 said that CPS did not have the right to accuse parents of medical neglect if that parent chooses not to “medicate” their child.
Ms. Noble worked with Senator Mark Anderson in the Senate and Representative Eddie Farnsworth in the House to ensure that the CPS bill included language to protect parents who refuse psychiatric drugs for their children. They all fought very hard for this language. In the end, House leadership led by Representative Eddie Farnsworth held the line during negotiations with the Governor by saying that the wording of the psychiatric drug clause was “non-negotiable”. On December 13th, 2003, the bill passed both the House and Senate and went to the Governor’s office for a signature. On December 18th the Governor signed HB 2024 into law.
“Parents should be thrilled with this new law guaranteeing that there will be no detrimental action taken against them by CPS, a state abuse agency, that was clearly operating well outside its “abuse” boundaries, said Rebecca Noble, Ablechild.Org Arizona Vice President. “Parents should have a definitive right to say no to all drugs used today to ‘treat’ diagnoses such as ADD/ADHD derived by completing both simple and highly subjective rating scales and checklists. These drugs many times have had severe side effects on a child, and a parent no longer willing to administer a drug based on the harm it has caused their child, should not be threatened with ‘abuse’ charges.”
Ms. Noble pointed out all parents need to be aware that additional legislation that would further protect their ‘right to refuse’ psychiatric drugs for their children was shot down recently. The recent anti-coercion legislation that Ms. Noble referenced was SB 1278, a bill simply stating that parents – not school employees – should make the medical decisions regarding children with behavior problems.
Sadly, Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano vetoed this important legislation and from this clear shot to parental rights, we can all but assume that the Governor believes that schools should be allowed to force parents to drug their children in order to be allowed to attend school.
The governor’s veto had prompted Senator Mark Anderson a champion of parental rights to issue a statement to the press on what he correctly calls the “Eroding of Parental Rights”. In addition to Senator Anderson, there are many key players in Arizona fighting the good fight, that fight for parental and children rights. These players will continue to champion this issue and fight to renew legislation. More effort is needed from Arizona parents to get the message out that there should be no compromises surrounding their parental rights to refuse drugs for their children and that their ‘right to refuse’ should be guaranteed.
Ablechild.org has its own personal experience with both coercion and harm due to psychiatric drugs. It has two members who have had children that have died from drugs forcibly prescribed them. Other members have had children harmed as from the drugs and many have had state abuse agencies called on them as well. As a result, of the widespread mental health systems abuses occurring within and outside the educational system, AbleChild a national grass root organization, was born to crusade for parental rights in the midst of a Nation clearly in crisis.
This crisis itself is schools forcing parents to administer drugs to their children in order to be in a classroom setting. The response to this crisis is that more than 12 States have initiated some form of legislation or resolutions to curb this trend in forced psychiatric drugging. There are seven States, which have laws on the books preventing schools from recommending or demanding that parents place their children on behavioral drugs as a condition for attending school. The Federal Government has even initiated a similar bill in response to the widespread coercion of parents occurring throughout the nation.
This bill “The Child Medication Safety Act of 2003” passed the House of Representatives 425-1. Currently it is pending in the Senate, stalled due to the many special interest groups claiming to have parental rights and children’s safety at heart yet still pocketing pharmaceutical funding. Ablechild.org is just one of the many organizations that have brought this conflict of interest to light to parents nationwide. For more information on this important bill visit www.ablechild.org.