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Eagle Forum News
Sept. 8, 2004

STOP SCHOOL-BASED MENTAL HEALTH SCREENING 
Tell Your Representative to vote YES on the Paul Amendment


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In 2002, President Bush created the New Freedom Commission, "to help eliminate inequality for Americans with disabilities." The Commission's report called for implementation of universal mental health screening in our public schools, citing that "schools are in a key position to identify mental health problems early."

This week the Departments of Labor/Health and Human Services/Education appropriations bill will come before the House of Representatives. Representative Ron Paul (R-TX) will offer an amendment prohibiting funding for universal mental health screening programs in our public schools.

KEY FACTS  
Mental Health Screening Programs

  • Parental rights are unclear or non-existent under these screening programs. What are the rights of youth and parents to refuse or opt out of this screening? Will they face coercion and threats of removal from school or child abuse/neglect charges if they refuse screening and/or "treatment"? How will a child remove a stigmatizing label from their records? Will parents be honestly told about the potentially severe side effects of the medications used in so-called treatments?

  • Parents are already being coerced to put their children on psychiatric medications and some children are dying because of it. Both Matthew Smith and Shaina Dunkle died of medication toxicity after their parents were coerced to place their children on drugs by the school.

  • The side effects of suggested medications in children are severe. They include suicide, violence, psychosis, cardiac (heart) toxicity, growth suppression, and diabetes. Several school shooters, like Eric Harris (Columbine), and Kip Kinkel (Oregon) were on antidepressants or stimulants or both at the time of their crimes.

The mission of our schools is to teach academics, not to implement government health screening programs. Universal mental health screening, as well as the drugging of children, can lead to thousands of children receiving questionable and stigmatizing diagnoses that would follow them for the rest of their lives. America's school children should not be medicated by expensive, ineffective and dangerous medication based on vague and dubious diagnoses.

Take Action 
Urge members to vote YES for the Paul Amendment to the Labor/HHS/Education bill.


Call Your Representative Now!

Capitol Switchboard (202) 224-3121


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