When Ms. Esmin Elizabeth Green died horrifically in a psychiatric
emergency room in New York, security camera footage was broadcast
internationally. A vigil and demonstration is planned, which
MindFreedom International fully supports and co-sponsors.
Below is a forwarded news release which is also on the web at:
FORWARDED NEWS RELEASE
VIGIL TO MOURN THE LOSS OF MS. ESMIN ELIZABETH GREEN AND CONDEMN
VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS
July 25, 2008 VIGIL and Demonstration - Kings County Hospital
Center, Building G, New York, USA
WE THE PEOPLE
Contact: Lauren J. Tenney, MA, MPA, Psychiatric Survivor FOR
IMMEDIATE RELEASE Cell: 516-319-4295
WE THE PEOPLE Call for an End of Abuse, Torture, and Neglect in the
Wake of Ms. Green's Death While Detained at Kings County Hospital
Center's Psychiatric Emergency Room.
Advocates, human rights activists, and community members are holding
a vigil and demonstration to mourn the death of Ms. Esmin Elizabeth
Green. WE the PEOPLE are calling attention to the reported horrific
inactions and complete neglect that Ms. Green was subjected to while
detained at the Kings County Hospital Center's Psychiatric Emergency
Room, 451 Clarkson Avenue Brooklyn, New York 11203.
According to the Associated Press, after being involuntarily
committed to the institution, Ms. Green sat waiting for a bed to
become available for nearly 24 hours before she collapsed on to the
floor. She lay there helpless for nearly an hour until she received
medical attention, which came too late[i]. Further, according to the
New York Civil Liberties Union, facility staff possibly falsified
documents, stating that Ms. Green was "up and went to the bathroom"
and was "'sitting quietly in the waiting room' - more than 10 minutes
after she last moved"[ii]. The surveillance tape shown on CNN Video
portrays Ms. Green dying on the floor as people pass her by[iii]. In
fact, on the Internet, one can find a mass of comment on this tragedy
by individuals all over the world - a question repeatedly asked,
"Where is the humanity?"
All people must be treated with dignity, humanity, and respect. We
must not tolerate violations of human rights that individuals who are
assigned psychiatric labels often endure.
We ask you, wouldn't you be depressed and possibly even 'agitated' if
you were going to lose your home and employment? Reportedly, this is
what led to Ms. Green's commitment[iv]. Any one of us could be
labeled with a psychiatric diagnosis and subjected to inhumane
'treatment' if we are thought to be 'agitated', particularly if we
How many more people labeled with "mental illness" will be subjected
to torture and neglect before something is done to protect human
rights within psychiatric systems? David Oaks, Executive Director of
MindFreedom International states, "I encourage us all to reflect on
the need for a deep nonviolent revolution in the field of mental
health, far beyond the "reforms" that have gotten us to where we are
today, with televised death via neglect of a mother of six".
In 1875, a New York Times article cites abuses of inmates at the
Kings County Asylum, spurred by Mr. Nelson Magee, a former inmate.
Then-Commissioner Norris reacts to the investigation, "This sort of
thing is very common among lunatics; they are always imagining
themselves in great danger of being killed by their keepers"v. How
many more centuries have to go by before action is taken to end these
abuses and neglect?
WE the PEOPLE stand for change. We have been abused by the
psychiatric system. Our brothers and sisters continue to be abused
and murdered, as evidenced by Ms. Green's untimely demise. Massive
human rights violations happen every day in psychiatric institutions
but this horrific inaction was captured on videotape. We will call
attention to the every day tortures committed in the name of
psychiatric "help" including diagnosing life's challenges as
''illness," forced pharmaceuticals, restraint, seclusion, and
electric shock treatment (ECT) with a Vigil to honor Ms. Green's
memory beginning at 2 PM.
There are many questions as to what led to Ms. Green's death. Was it
in any way related to the toxic and debilitating drugs that people
labeled with "mental illness" are intimidated, coerced, and forced
into taking? A thorough investigation is necessary to determine the
extent of the torture, ill treatment and other human rights
violations involved in this case and in the practices of the
institution as a whole. We must stand united to demand social
justice, equal rights, and environments free from torture and detention.
On July 25, 2008, we invite all people to join us and stand united in
support of the demand that everyone receive the full benefit of their
human rights and the preservation of their liberty, dignity and respect.
Who: All People.
What: Candle Light Vigil to mourn the loss of Ms. Esmin Elizabeth
Green and condemn violations of human rights.
Why: WE THE PEOPLE call for an end of abuse, torture, and neglect in
the wake of Ms. Green's Death on June 19, 2008, while detained at
Kings County Hospital Center's Psychiatric Emergency Room.
Where: Kings County Hospital Center, Psychiatric Emergency Room,
Building G. 606 Winthrop Street Brooklyn, NY 11203
Date: July 25, 2008
Time: 5 PM - 10 PM, Candle Light Vigil, 8:30 PM
We welcome your involvement as an organizational co-sponsor or an
individual endorser of this effort. If you would like to speak at
this event, please contact us.
WE THE PEOPLE
For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact:
Contact: Lauren J. Tenney
[i] Retrieved July 8, 2008 from http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/
[ii] Retrieved July 8, 2008 from http://www.nyclu.org/node/1876
[iii] Retrieved on July 8, 2008 from http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/07/01/
[iv] Retrieved July 8, 2008, from http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/07/03/
[v] Retrieved July 9, 2008 from http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-
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Above news release is also on web with links: