Sheriff Tom Allman & Mental Illness in Mendocino

by Jonah Raskin, September 14, 2016

A specter is haunting Mendocino: the specter of mental illness. No one knows that story better, both personally and professionally, than Thomas D. Allman who has served as the county sheriff ever since he was first elected to the office in 2006, a year after his older brother, Mike, shot and killed himself in Humboldt County. Mike Allman was 47 years old, a veteran of the US Air Force, the father of four children, and a college graduate who “always had demons.” The Allman family hasn’t been the same since that day, as the Sheriff himself explained in his office on Low Gap Road in Ukiah, where he not only has a collection of unusual hats, but where he also wears many different hats as the county’s top cop and the most visible advocate for mental health in Mendocino. “When I became sheriff, I didn’t realize the enormity of the problem of mental illness in our county,” he tells me. “Now I do.”

After Mike Allman’s 2005 suicide, his mother, Norma, joined The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), the grass roots organization that provides support to the families of the mentally ill. Norma proudly calls herself a “NAMI Mommy” and Tom Allman is proud of her efforts on behalf of the mentally ill. Mendocino law enforcement officers have trained with NAMI professionals — there’s a NAMI chapter in Ukiah — and, not surprisingly, Sheriff Allman has good things to say about the organization and its efficiency. Indeed, help for the mentally ill isn’t far away if one knows where to turn, whom to call and if loving family members can provide assistance.

Over the past decade, Sheriff Allman has watched as mental health as an issue has moved from the sidelines to the center of the stage in Mendocino County. He has seen it morph with amazing speed into a social epidemic that has devastated families, ripped apart the fabric of communities and destroyed human lives.

Per capita, Mendocino is rated 10th or 11th in suicides in California. For all its natural beauty, there’s a dark side to the county. There are more suicides per capita in rural than in urban areas, and more suicides per capita in northern California than in southern California, though more people commit suicide in and around Los Angles than in all of northern California’s counties. Mendocino ranks high on the California suicide list, but Lake and Trinity counties are higher still.

* * *

Allman

Allman

Allman hasn’t merely sat back and observed the alarming epidemic that affects citizens inland and on the coast, in the mountains and the valleys, in well-off and not very well-off families. Sitting back and just observing is not his way. It never has been. It wasn’t with marijuana and it’s not with mental health now. Once again, he has waded into turbulent waters and rolled up his sleeves. Indeed, while he hasn’t acted alone, he’s largely responsible for two linked measures, AG and AH, which will be on the ballot this November.

As Allman’s lucid Facebook page explains, “Mendocino County Voters will soon have an opportunity to vote for a TEMPORARY half-cent sales tax to develop a Mental Health Facility right here, in Mendocino County. I hope that you will help me support Measures AG and Measures AH.” The response has given him all the encouragement he could want or need.

Allman, along with friends, allies and supporters — there are thousands of them from all walks of life — want a new facility for the mentally ill in Mendocino. They also want to train doctors, nurses, health professionals, parents, pharmacists, teachers, bus drivers, students and the like so they will understand and know how to work with the mentally ill. Clearly it takes a village.

Right now, as many citizens no doubt know, the county does not have a hospital for angry, self-destructive teens, distraught, depressed lovers and troubled, trigger-happy veterans who often can’t get to a VA hospital in time to make a difference. Mendocino County shuttered its Psychiatric Housing Facility (PHF) in 1999.

Adding to the problem, are the befuddled tourists up and down the Mendocino coast who on any given day might be a danger to themselves and to others. They also need help and they get it, too. Ironically, or perhaps not, Mendocino County deputies are usually the first responders when visitors have psychotic episodes in hotel and motel rooms and threaten to end their lives. Vacations can bring out the worst in almost anyone. Moreover, there are dozens of mentally ill individuals who may or may not commit a crime, but who end up in the county jail. Twenty-percent of all inmates have psychological problems that can be exacerbated by cold cells and iron bars.

Right now, sad to say, Mendocino often sends the disturbed, the unbalanced and the unhinged to Vallejo, Sonoma and Yuba, usually in the back seat of a police vehicle equipped with a cage. “Think of a sixteen-year-old girl-who receives a text from her boyfriend that says, ‘goodbye,” Allman explains. “She takes an overdose. Law enforcement shows up, drags her away and deposits her in a hospital in Yuba later the same day where she sits around maybe for hours. By then, she might be really suicidal.”

Allman doesn’t provide a name for the troubled teenage girl dumped by her dumb boyfriend. He doesn’t have to. There are dozens of teens like her. The County exports them, much as it exports wine and marijuana; and it sends taxpayers’ dollars out of the county, too, to facilities across northern California.

The more stories that Allman tells, the more obvious it is that the issue has touched a nerve. He almost went ballistic himself when a man was denied treatment because his form was filled out in two different colors – blue and black — and didn’t pass muster. And he finds it mind-boggling that the county will spend a small fortune looking for a hunter lost in the wilderness, but will pinch pennies when it comes to rescuing a teenage lost in her own head. The way that American society —not just Mendocino County — mistreats the mentally ill is enough to drive almost anyone crazy at least for a day or two.

* * *

Sheriff Allman doesn’t like what he sees and hears. He doesn’t think it’s right. But right now, men and women who are trained to enforce the law are also asked to tend to the needs of the mentally ill, from Point Arena to Covelo and from Leggett to Gualala.

“When a police officer kills a mentally ill person,” Allman says, “the media usually wants to know why that’s happened. What reporters ought to ask is not why the cop shot and killed the man, but why law enforcement and not mental health professionals responded in the first place?”

Allman adds, “If a non-violent person is having a psychotic episode, don’t dispatch a 21-year-old officer who has been told that people are out to kill him or her, and who has been trained to use a gun, a baton, and a Taser.” To clarify even further, the sheriff explains, “I want law enforcement to enforce the law and I want mental health professionals to provide mental health services.” If that sounds basic, it is. It’s as American as the separation of church and state, the right to a fair trial and the pursuit of happiness that Thomas Jefferson touted in the Declaration of Independence.

* * *

The problem, as Allman understands it, isn’t merely the absence of a local facility for the mentally ill, or the lack of trained professionals. It’s broader, deeper and perhaps more fundamental. It comes down to attitudes and prejudices and the fact that mental illness has been and still is the elephant in the room that few if any people have been willing to talk about openly and candidly.

“When someone is depressed, suicidal or psychotic they’re often told, ‘Hey, suck it up,’” Allman says. “We have to accept the fact that mental illness is all-pervasive. Over the years that I’ve been Sheriff, I’ve learned that everyone has a mental health story to tell. Now, what we need to do is improve the quality of life for the kinds of people who want to end their own lives and who don't see a reason to go on living.”

As Sheriff, Allman has seen more crises than he imagined he would ever see when he started out as sheriff a decade-and-a-half ago. In fact, he’s seen mental illness flare up in all kinds of situations, from domestic violence and teenage run-aways to family feuds. It’s the common denominator. Two Sheriff’s Department employees took their own lives during his watch — and that hurt. “I was outside the apartment for one of the suicides,” he says. “I heard the gun go off. I was a friend.”

And he still hasn’t forgotten his brother, Mike, who took his own life, or that his mother is still in recovery.

With the sheriff’s enthusiastic backing, Props AG and AH seem to have a good chance of passing. The mental health community has provided strong backing. NAMI supports AG and AH, but it’s Allman who has taken the lead. He gathered, all on his own, hundreds of signatures on the petitions that put the measures on the ballot. Moreover, he has stayed cool, calm and collected.

“Hey, mental illness isn’t a crime,” he tells me.

What should a young deputy know when she or he goes out for the first time in response to a crisis, I ask him. “Check in your tool box,” he says.

“Make sure that you have plenty of empathy and lots of caring.” Indeed, until a new facility is built and professionals are recruited and hired, Mendocino will have to count, to a large extent, on the empathy and the caring of young law enforcement officers. Perhaps Sheriff Tom Allman himself will inspire them to do the right thing.

26 Responses to Sheriff Tom Allman & Mental Illness in Mendocino

  1. sohumlily Reply

    September 14, 2016 at 4:49 pm

    comment from the Mad in America site
    http://www.madinamerica.com/2016/09/confessions-of-a-trespasser/#/comment-94958

    “And yet on Sept 8 2016 when I visited the same loved one at Mercy Hospital in Roseburg Or. about an hour expressway Highway 5 drive from Sacred Heart . I saw something “somewhat” different . The ABU GRUB GUANTANAMO ( my name for it) 3 bed crisis unit . The “rooms” are small , stark walls painted a darker shade of eggshell white . No view to the outdoors . A raised 6 ft. by 4ft. waist high platform in the center of the room , a 2 inch mattress in the socket on top the platform . Clean sheets an small pillow on top. There is a switch to turn lights on and off . Camera’s an mics cover entire room . Theres a special room up front attached to small lobby where at least one of two security guards monitor viewing screens at all times .” Meds” are given on time by any means necessary. There is nothing to do . accross the hallway is a room with a toilet and shower . Uniforms are blue strong disposable short sleeve paper pants and top . There is a 20 ft.long 8 ft. wide hallway between the room and the shower room . Sunlight does entirely not enter even indirectly into the space I have described .A paper back book was thrown into the room. Only contact is with staff . It was a really severe sensory depravation torture enviornment my loved had to endure for 7 consecutive days .There were no electrical wires attached to her fingers . Otherwise it reminded me of the photos of ABU GRUB . They did allow me to visit twice . We didn’t know how long this type of torture would be applied . She was taken there after 10 days at Bay Area Hospital in Coos Bay Oregon followed by a Super Obvious Kangaroo Court finding for a 6 month commitment accused of among other things throwing a half cup of “hot” tea at a psychiatrist not her own as he passed near her at Bay Area Hospital in Coos Bay Or.. I heard the “eminent psychiatrist testify by telephone in the Douglas County Court in Roseburg Or. where they transfered my loved one a 51 year old woman ankles shackled together, belt shackle around waist wrists shackled together at front attached to belt shackle . Just like Hannibal Lector but without the face mask . Public Defender was assigned the case the day before and the Choreographed Kangaroo Court Ritual went as previously planned . Of course I was eventually asked by His Honor the Judge to leave the court room . I complied as two 6 ft.+ armed sheriffs were prepared to drag me out if I didn’t exit. Sadly Roseburg Or. recently went through one of those tragic mass shootings and so they are not so friendly toward anyone with any “diagnosis”. And my sweethearts case manager plus other supervising authorities live and work in Roseburg Or. which is also within Douglas County as is Reedsport ,Or. where we live . Yes I have finally contacted a lawyer that might help if I can come up with the do re mi required .”

    NAMI is mostly funded by big Pharma. Psych meds make *billions* of dollars a year for them.

    The ‘identified patient’ is often scapegoated by toxic family members. Not uncommon at all.

  2. Lazarus Reply

    September 14, 2016 at 5:38 pm

    I’m voting for Allman’s tax, we have to start somewhere.
    As always,
    Laz

    • james marmon Reply

      September 14, 2016 at 5:49 pm

      Good, I hope they save a bed for you.

      • Lazarus Reply

        September 15, 2016 at 7:44 am

        I’m not the one with the restraining orders…now run along and play…

  3. james marmon Reply

    September 14, 2016 at 6:38 pm

    “Dr. John Breeding, Ph.D. Psychologists discusses pharmaceutical front groups that pretend to be mental health consumer advocates but receive huge donations and funding from Big Pharma corporations to forward their marketing agenda. Where does NAMI (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill) fit into this picture?”

    http://www.psychetruth.net/psychology-3/mental-health/big-pharma-front-groups-nami-psychiatry-mental-health/

  4. james marmon Reply

    September 14, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    “There is no defense for forced treatment and confinement, outpatient commitment, the chemical brain disease theory, or Big Pharma money. NAMI supports all that, and many people are angry at them. Some people were hurt personally and lastingly by the mental health system, and give NAMI a share of the blame.”

    http://www.madinamerica.com/2012/06/what-i-really-think-about-nami-an-apology-and-clarification/

  5. Liz Haapanen Reply

    September 14, 2016 at 8:29 pm

    Great and good for Tom Allman, but, at great expense to myself and my family, I just moved my mentally ill son out of this county so that he can get the help he needs and deserves.

  6. Sonya Nesch Reply

    September 15, 2016 at 5:09 am

    NAMI Mendocino County is a completely volunteer organization started in 1992. We provide free Family Support Groups and Family-to-Family Education. We also provide free Peer-to-Peer classes and Community Education Forums. Our Newsletter is on our website namimendocino.org. Many of our members provide advocacy, and collected signatures to get Measure AG on the ballot. Please join me in voting yes on Measure AG and Measure AH — A Temporary Tax for a Permanent Solution.

    • BB Grace Reply

      September 15, 2016 at 7:53 am

      Stepping Up Inniative with a $29 Billion Budget is sponsored by NAMI.

      Stepping Up Inniative is closing jails as it stops the “frequent flyer” and cycling of mentally ill.

      I support the Stepping Up Inniative as THE solution

      • james marmon Reply

        September 15, 2016 at 9:18 am

        The Stepping Up Initiative is just another vehicle to fast lane more pharmaceutical consumers, that’s why NAMI International sponsors it. Hurry! Hurry! Hurry! Step right up ladies and gentlemen.”

        I’m surprised that you haven’t researched this more Ms. BB Grace.

        Our local NAMI, influenced by Sonya Nesch the Director of Emergency Medicine at Coast Hospital wants her Mental Health jail, that is why she is not promoting the Stepping Up Initiative right now.

        “The standards of care of the modern mental health system all but insist that a therapist use force in working with clients diagnosed with severe psychiatric problems—especially those labeled with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. The mental health practitioner is taught to be skeptical of their judgment, their self-control, and thus their wishes.

        Hand-in-hand with this skepticism comes the therapeutic model that says that “we know what is best for them” and that all of our decisions and our expertise, whether they like it or not, are “for their own good.”

        http://www.mindfreedom.org/kb/mental-health-alternatives/therapy-without-force/

  7. Jonah Raskin Reply

    September 15, 2016 at 11:39 am

    I did not include in my story about Sheriff Allman and mental illness my own experiences. I thought it would detract from the information I wanted to provide. But I would like to add here that 12 years ago in a funk and deeply depressed and on medication that did made my situation worse, not better, I went to Langley Porter the psychiatric hospital in San Francisco because I had heard good things about it. The staff put me on a gurney in the emergency room. I was there from about 8:30 am to 8:30 p.m. and listened to the screams of wounded men and women. When a doctor or nurse or social worker came to talk to me I said repeatedly that I was depressed and wanted to be admitted to Langley Porter. Nothing happened until a therapist whose name I have forgotten approached and said “Jonah, the only way you will be admitted is if you say you are a danger to yourself and to others.” The next time a doctor came around I told him what I had been told to say. I related this story to Sheriff Allman who replied, “You knew the password.” Indeed I did. I was admitted. I spent 5 days as an in-patient and 5 days as an out-patient. My health plan would not pay for any more days. In Langley Porter the doctors changed my medication; with Remeron I was able to sleep at night. I had only been getting 3-4 hours each night. I was in one-on-one therapy with psychiatrists. I was in group therapy and I was in workshops. I met many wonderful, supportive people, patients and doctors and health professionals. It was one of the best learning experiences in my life. I am glad I spent that time in Langley Porter. I have had some ups and downs since then, but no depression like the depression I experienced before I went into the hospital. I wrote and published an article about my depression and many people read it and contacted me wanting me to help them, which I could not really do since I am not a doctor or a therapist. I would repeat what Sheriff Allman said to me,
    “Everyone has a mental illness story” and “mental illness is not a crime.” It helps to get the subject into the open and to share experiences.Thanks for listening and thinking and being a part of the conversation.

    • james marmon Reply

      September 15, 2016 at 2:54 pm

      Here’s my experience with mental health, Mr. Raskin.

      Contrary to popular belief I have never been hospitalized or treated for a mental illness. However, I have worked on and off as a mental health professional in the past 25 years for several different organizations, Placer County Mental Health, Lake County Mental Health, and Volunteers of America Mental Health Services in Sacramento just to name a few. My concentration (major) in both my undergraduate and graduate programs was mental health and I completed two internships in Mental Health organizations. I was also the LPS Conservatorship Case Manager for Lake County for over a year. I have been considered an expert witness in the mental health field by several courtrooms throughout the State of California. One of the reasons I got involved with Child Welfare when I did was because my clients were loosing their children to the system and I wanted to change things there, some upstream social work. Its important to look at both sides of the situation before passing out any more Kool-Aid. As you can tell I spit mine out and there’s still time for you. Just put your finger down your throat, get rid of that stuff, be informed and become a real mental health advocate. I recommend the following website as a place to start. Here it from the real experts.

      “Maybe you came to this site today because you’re currently being subjected to forced medication or forced electroshock and you’re looking for information and assistance to win back your basic human rights and dignity from a mental health system that is all too often violent, coercive, and downright abusive. Maybe you’re visiting this website because you work in the system and have become disillusioned with the coercion and force you’re asked to carry out against patients as part of your job, maybe you’re visiting because you’re considering training as a mental health nurse, social worker, or psychiatrist. Maybe you’re considering having your loved one committed against their will. No matter who you are or the reason you’ve arrived here at the MindFreedom site, you are certain to find illuminating and useful information here on all topics related to the mental health system and human rights.”

      http://www.mindfreedom.org/mfi-faq/go/now

      James Marmon MSW

      And, still crazy after all these years.

  8. Eric Sunswheat Reply

    September 15, 2016 at 2:48 pm

    Sheriff Allman invites us to come up with a better plan, but does not share his confidential memo circulated to the Ordnance planning group, asking those who have seen it, to not make it public.

    Reimbursement for facility staffing, is based upon current payments for chemical drug injections, which are toxic and allowed because of fraudulent safety studies.

    So, readily apparent is that the Sheriff has a vested interest, and thus disadvantages the general public to not see a global view, for the rationale and or flow charts. That’s a perception.

    We have the simple question for sales tax presented to us, in County treatment or more of the same out of County.

    Here we have a proposal that puts to concrete, an outdated involuntary forced injections, or coercive persuasion that this is good for the patient.

    The initiative calls for 10% allocation for training facilities. Why is this not to be handled in existing educational and County facilities on space available basis.

    Are the agencies for staffers going to be paying for use and upkeep, or is that to be tacked on to patient billing.

    The challenge is design a treatment of crisis care program without injections, including sufficient outdoor space with plants, and sun room for cloudy days with sunlamp therapy.

    Perhaps some will say that vitamin D3 oral administration is enough for early stages of crisis care, but that is an unfunded treatment modality.

    The risk, in the Sheriff’s rush plan, to be first in setting an example for other counties, the wheels may fall off from the good intentions, as the optimism is replaced with reality of a mental health jail.

    Don’t forget that the Sheriff’s incarceration home detention program precludes sunbathing for health improvement, as the mission is punishment.

    Perhaps it would be best that a significant portion of the hoped for $20 million could be put into a renewal agricultural harvest equity program, to benefit participants.

    What is written here today, may be partially moot, with a new statewide mental health and homeless funding program, just signed into law by the Governor in the past days.

    And, here below is a testing program that influences behavior, not covered by most mental health treatment plans, that is also right on target for criminal justice rehabilitation.

    A saying that a person who represents themselves in court, has a fool for an attorney. Does the same go for a County who has a law enforcement Sheriff design a mental health program, with all due respect to Tom Allman.

    An update on commissionary snacks that can be purchased with inmate funds, would be appreciated.

    Is the punishment incentive still nutritional minimum standards, with incremental assisted suicide with sugary chemical snack foods, that were available for jail staff purchase at the time of Steve Neuroth’s untimely in custody death,being litigated with settlement conference September 20th in federal court San Francisco, against the County.

    Eric

    p.s. – heavy metal hair analysis

    https://www.healthrangerstore.com/products/cwc-labs-heavy-metals-analysis?variant=20627172865

    • james marmon Reply

      September 15, 2016 at 3:19 pm

      Mr. Sunswheat, a “heavy metal hair analysis,” will indicate high levels of Mercury, especially here in Lake County, we drink and bath in the stuff.

      “Mad hatter disease, or mad hatter syndrome, is occupational chronic mercury poisoning among hatmakers whose felting work involved prolonged exposure to mercury vapors. The neurotoxic effects included tremor and the pathological shyness and irritability characteristic of erethism.”

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mad_hatter_disease

      Medications

      Some medications that can be used for erethism are Traid and Ritalin. Methylphenidate (Ritalin) is a stimulant drug approved for therapy of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and narcolepsy. It may also be prescribed for off-label use in treatment-resistant cases of lethargy, depression (mood), or neural insult.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erethism

      • james marmon Reply

        September 15, 2016 at 3:45 pm

        I suggest we all get some fresh air, the best cure for Erethism.

        Those hot showers and boiling water to cook with are both killing me but I can go around stinking and I certainly can’t afford bottled water.

        https://www.bing.com/search?q=quicksilver+messenger+service+fresh+air&form=PRUSEN&pc=EUPP_&mkt=en-us&httpsmsn=1&refig=d09edee122c34606b7ab71abcb06a6df&qs=AS&pq=quicksilver+me&sk=LS1AS1&sc=8-14&sp=5&cvid=d09edee122c34606b7ab71abcb06a6df

      • Eric Sunswheat Reply

        September 15, 2016 at 4:21 pm

        There is much more influence of heavy metal than just mercury, although mental illness by dentistry or lack of dental care, is a big continuing problem in lower income clinics.

        This is very much unregulated as a killings field, when looking at long term mental and physical health hazard projections, but EDTA and chlorophyll nutrition among other protocol, comes into play along with body pH balance if the mercury is still in the teeth.

        Mercury is a gas that keeps on being released into the human tissue, although the ADA would disagree with this statement, as they hold the patent on amalgam fillings, I think is the take away.

        A new book I harped on a few months ago at the Ukiah library which represents a sea change, is being brought into the college classroom.

        It’s a question of minimization of heavy metals, whether chelated or free radical, and balance of minerals, if using technical nomenclature correctly.

        Zinc, and lead, are well known to the progressive therapeutic community and in literature, to be of concern.

        Now the adept new professionals will have at least the terminology at the tip of their tongues, while shaking their heads, tisk, tisk, there is not a reimbursement funding source.

        I can’t discuss much more about that particular website heavy metal test offering link because my excerpt posting was first blocked as spam by the AVA. I had to paste it again and make changes, while my computer was seizing up.

        I would imagine Alpha Analytical laboratories in Ukiah could test also. A range of heavy metal and related mineral testing may be recommended, to be compared with what is offered on the website.

        You could also probably make a public records request to Mendocino County, as there was a facilitated sponsorship of a workshop perhaps 15 years ago in Willits.

        A traveling medical show with accent on aberrant children behavior, was suggesting links to heavy metals and more.

        The traveling clinic scheduled sample collecting, which was self pay, at a location near SFO airport, and results were sent later, either by mail or in person follow up with another nurse health professional.

  9. james marmon Reply

    September 16, 2016 at 10:20 pm

    Last week Attorney Jen Ani, (from San Francisco) and I had to intervene and stop Mendocino County Social Services who threatening to stop a mother’s CalWorks benefits unless she agreed to open a voluntary CPS case. In the voluntary case plan she was told that she had to voluntarily undergo a mental health examination and voluntarily follow all the recommendations if she wanted help with her housing and was interested in keeping her kids. Its amazing, no one in Mendocino understands what the word voluntary means. I’m here to help.

    Voluntary.

    adjective

    1. done, made, brought about, undertaken, etc., of one’s own accord or by free choice:

    The County already has a lawsuit against them for coercion when they threatened a family last year that they would take them to court if they didn’t voluntary place their child in foster care. When they did, CPS had a doctor prescribe psychotropic medications to the child without his family’s consent or a court order. No court orders for psychotropic medications are required on voluntary cases.

    This whole mental health thing is going to get crazy folks, Camille Schraeder’s “web of services” is a web of deceit and driven by greed.

    The Sheriff needs to realize that he can’t force people into receiving mental health services as well, but I suppose the sheriff and other law enforcement agencies will make it hard on them if they don’t. Mental Health services are voluntary folks and should be left that way, as citizens you have rights.

    Any family who is being coerced or threatened by any Social Services department to undergo Mental Health evaluations without a court order should contact an out of town attorney. I recommend Jen Ani.

    http://anilaw.com/

    She cleared the whole thing up with just a couple of phone calls, it took her just a few minutes.

    • james marmon Reply

      September 17, 2016 at 10:36 am

      I used to coerce families into voluntary cases when I didn’t have enough to detain their children and/or present a case that would hold up in court. I would then use the voluntary case as a tool to build a stronger case against the family. Have them evaluated by Drug and Alcohol, Mental Health, or whoever until I had a stronger case, and if they didn’t comply with their voluntary case plan, I would use it against them. I know this trick all too well. I was one of the best ever at violating their parental rights. Its how I was trained. That’s why I was in the Court Unit.

      James Marmon MSW

  10. james marmon Reply

    September 18, 2016 at 1:48 pm

    As like John Weir Perry, I too have been heavily influenced by Carl Jung and his views on schizophrenia, we see it differently than most the world. Good read.

    The Far Side of Madness, by John Weir Perry.

    “The schizophrenic’s obsession with “social reform” is viewed as more than merely a “complaint against the faulty parental world.” For Perry, the ideation of a “new society” is a legitimate psychic concern that affects us all: a collective problem seeking a collective solution, and one that especially manifests in psychotic and visionary states of consciousness. He asks:

    With our secular governments, and with our diminishing trust in any generally accepted higher moral or spiritual authority … where do we find our real governance–one that involves us in depth? I consider this to be the modern problem that the archetypal psyche is wrestling with in order to produce a convincing new myth that will satisfy the need of the times.

    Society’s rebirth is dependent upon continual psychic upheaval: a renewal of the social archetype rooted in each individual psyche. It is there that we find the true matrix of history. And when social institutions become too rigid, it is there that we uncover a creative means of transforming them.”

    http://www.tygersofwrath.com/psychosis.htm

    My mentor, George Sanders, studied under Jung. That is where I was influenced.

    http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/record-bee/obituary.aspx?pid=2979581

  11. BB Grace Reply

    September 20, 2016 at 10:05 am

    This could be good news:
    http://calwatchdog.com/2016/09/20/brown-mulls-bills-overseeing-psychotropic-drugs-foster-kids/

    The key concern, raised by a five-part San Jose Mercury News investigative series beginning in 2014: “They are wrenched from abusive homes, uprooted again and again, often with their life’s belongings stuffed into a trash bag. … But instead of providing a stable home and caring family, the state’s foster care system gives them a pill. With alarming frequency, foster and health care providers are turning to a risky but convenient remedy to control the behavior of thousands of troubled kids: numbing them with psychiatric drugs that are untested on and often not approved for children.”

    • james marmon Reply

      September 20, 2016 at 10:30 am

      Ms. BB Grace, thank you for your caring contribution on this issue, it is something I don’t go one day without thinking about. I do have one problem with your above statement however. In reality, most children being removed are not being abused, they are being removed because they are considered to be “at risk” of being abused. Social Workers are trained to use a formula for determining risk and then act accordingly.

      Yes, the removals from their loved ones can be quite emotional for children but you need to understand that foster parents are very hard to find and changing placements can cause even more trauma to the child. I have never been a proponent for chemical restraints, but mental health providers feel they are necessary to provide stability and decrease placements, especially if your mental health provider also owns a foster care agency.

      If you would like to do some research yourself on my assertations, here is a very helpful tool. Its complicated, but once you master it, it is quite enlightening.

      http://cssr.berkeley.edu/ucb_childwelfare/

      James Marmon MSW

      • james marmon Reply

        September 20, 2016 at 11:21 am

        I usually don’t recommend many movies unless they are Ken Kesey influenced, but I found the film “The Tall Man” to be quite thought provoking as to whether removing children from their parents is really in the best interest of the child. Does the end really justify the means?

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Tall_Man_%282012_film%29

  12. sohumlily Reply

    September 21, 2016 at 8:26 am

    “I have never been a proponent for chemical restraints, but”

    Wow, sir, I think *you* should do some research on those ‘medications’….that is EXACTLY what they are. Chemical restraints.

    Take a look around on the “Mad in America” site; look into GENUINE research not sponsored by Big Pharma…see the bit about how to ‘chemical imbalance’ theory has been shown to be a lie (to market drugs–in fact, the drugs *change* brain chemistry)…check out sites like “Surviving Antidepressants” and look into survivor stories…all this is a HUGE business. Big Pharma spends more on lobbying than *any* other industry. “Mental Health” is an industry…and for all their awesome medications that are peddled to the vulnerable and helpless at shocking rates, how many ‘consumers’ are doing well in their lives? Why are disability numbers *so high* if those meds are all that?

    Check out Robert Whitaker’s books and website. Check out Peter C. Gotzsche’s book “Deadly Medicines and Organised Crime : How Big Pharma Has Corrupted Healthcare” Listen to the stories of survivors…after all, they have had the experience of taking those drugs. The ‘professionals’ have a vested interest in the status quo, and it’s looking like you are very much part of it.

    Lives are being lost thanks to all the psych meds being pushed on increasing numbers of the population as society crumbles all around us in these late capitalistic times.

    • james marmon Reply

      September 21, 2016 at 8:35 am

      I was being facetious, I agree with you 100%.

      James Marmon MSW

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