Congressman James Sensenbrenner, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has weighed in on the importance of maintaining parental consent rights. These parental rights are now in jeopardy if H.R. 181, The Parental Consent Act of 2005 dies in committee.
Congressman Sensenbrenner has emphatically stated, “It is not, and should not be, the role of government to subject children to arbitrary mental health screenings without the consent of their parents. Parents, children, and their private doctors should determine whether a child has mental health problems, not government bureaucrats.”
His statement comes just after House Majority Leader Tom DeLay stood up for parental rights and released this statement last week. “In the wake of the creation of psychiatric labels, every parent should be wary of relinquishing their responsibility to the government to define and assess their child’s mental health status.”
The highly controversial issue of mandatory mental health screening programs of American school children initiated by the President’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health is the subject of widespread debate. This debate arises due to the use of subjective, unscientific psychological testing methods used for screening children for mental illness without the provision of full parental informed consent in place. This “testing” is currently awaiting federal funds to expand the implementation of screening programs nationwide.
“If H.R. 181 is passed it will prevent wasteful and potentially devastating federal funding while safeguarding the informed consent rights of all parents in what is a most serious matter, their children’s health and safety”, says Patricia Weathers President and co-founder of AbleChild.org a national non-profit group of parents committed to ensuring that the issue of informed consent and an individual’s right to “opt out” of psychological testing is a national priority.
Dr. Grace Jackson, a board certified psychiatrist since 1996 recently stated, “Contrary to the reports which have been emphasized by the major news outlets, there is no evidence to justify the claim that psychiatric disorders arise from anatomic or physiological abnormalities in the brain. Based upon a variety of theoretical and practical limitations, the functional imaging technologies cannot identify the origin of mental phenomena.”
In light of such growing controversial fervor and obvious lack of agreement on the issue of psychiatric diagnoses within the medical establishment itself, any promotion or implementation of mandated, which is equivalent to forced, screening methods should be viewed as a national threat to public health, and should be challenged by the American public.
For more information on mental health screening programs, psychiatric drug risks, and the FDA’s warnings regarding psychiatric drugs, please visit www.ablechild.org .