This morning, 5 February 2009, Ray Sandford received another involuntary, outpatient, maintenance electroshock in Minnesota. Here’s how you can peacefully protest from anywhere via the Internet, or in Minnesota.

Ray Sandford is regularly given involuntary outpatient electroshock in Minnesota.

Ray Alert Update #13: 5 February 2009

Ray Sandford phoned MindFreedom today. His involuntary outpatient electroshocks resumed this morning, Thursday, 5 February 2009.

This treatment had been scheduled for last week, but was delayed because of health issues.

For background on the Ray Campaign see this gateway:

Ray Sandford has now had as many or more forced electroshocks as the character in the film Revolutionary Road.

Actor Michael Shannon was nominated for an Academy Award for “Best Supporting Actor” for his role as an electroshock survivor in that film.

Ray is a real human being.


1) Protest to Richard Pettingill, Chief executive officer (CEO) of Allina Hospital and Clinics:

Ask that your civil verbal protest be placed in Ray Sandford’s medical record using their online web form:

Sample message (your own words are best):

“Dear Mr. Richard Pettingill:

“I request that my message be placed in the permanent medical record of your patient Ray Sandford, who states that he is receiving ongoing involuntary electroshock at Mercy Hospital administered by Allina psychiatrist Bernard M Coelho, MD.

“While you cannot violate the privacy of a patient, I ask that you respond in general about your policy of allowing involuntary electroshock over the expressed wishes of the subject.

“Whether or not you feel this is legal, it is unethical, immoral and traumatic to everyone in mental health care.

“The reason(s) I protest this forced electroshock are:

“My name and contact information: _______”

You may also try to phone Mr. Richard Pettingill’s office at 612-262-0601 or 612-262-5000.

Dr. Coelho direct phone number listed on the Allina web site is 612-264-4379. However, for a while this phone number was disconnected. If it does not work, you may try to leave him a message at the above numbers, or Mercy at 763-236-6000.

2) Bishop Mark Hanson of the Lutheran Church

While the Lutheran Church is not directly in charge of Ray’s electroshock, they are supposed to help “guard” Ray, they are supposed to care deeply about social justice, yet they are not supporting Ray’s campaign to end his forced electroshock.

The six Minnesota Synods of the “Evangelical Lutheran Church in America” [ELCA] — which is the largest Lutheran denomination in the USA — own Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota [LSSMN], which is Ray’s court-appointed general guardian.

ELCA and LSSMN have refused to speak out for Ray.

MindFreedom has been in touch with the office of Bishop Mark Hanson, who leads ELCA. Bishop Hanson asked Ruth Reko, ELCA’s Director of Social Ministry Department, to respond to MFI. Today, Ms. Reko told MindFreedom, “Supervision is not a concept we enter into with affiliates like LSSMN or our 299 other social service agency affiliates.”

Please ask Bishop Mark Hanson, to encourage ELCA, its Synods and its agencies to engage in productive dialogue on human rights and mental health, especially involuntary electroshock.

Please e-mail to Bishop Mark Hanson here:

Sample message (your own words are best):

“Dear Bishop Hanson:

“Please engage in dialogue about human rights and mental health. I am not saying ELCA is directly in charge of anyone’s forced electroshock, but ELCA could take a stand against it. In the name of social justice, ELCA ought to have more oversight over its affiliated social service agencies that receive taxpayer funds to guard clients.

“Your name and contact info: ___________”

You may also try phoning Bishop Hanson or Ms. Ruth Reko by calling (773) 380-2700, wait for an attendant.

3) Engage your local religious organizations in dialogue on human rights and mental health

Ray has given us all an opportunity to encourage our local faith-based communities to address the justice issues involved in mental health care today.

Ask that your local church, synagogue, mosque, etc. find a way to raise issues about human rights and mental health.

Those in the USA may also seek to engage in dialogue with participants and leaders in your local ELCA church, which you may easily locate here:

Please act today!

Because of today’s cancellation, MindFreedom does not know when Ray’s next scheduled electroshock may be. It could be as early as 4 February or 11 February.

Minnesota Nonviolent Protests for Ray

Several individuals and groups in Minnesota have told MindFreedom they would like to help support and attend peaceful protests on behalf of Ray in Minnesota.

Several MindFreedom members have even said they are willing to travel from out of state and from out of the country to participate in protests.

MindFreedom will broadcast more information as it is received.

How to do and learn more on the Ray Campaign

For links to latest news, Ray Campaign blog, to hear the NPR radio story on Ray, and read Frequently Asked Questions about the “No More Shock For Ray Campaign” go here:

To further participate in the MindFreedom campaign to support Ray, current MindFreedom members are invited to get on the very busy MindFreedom “zapback” e-mail list about electroshock, here:

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Independence, mutual support and strength in numbers are why MindFreedom is one of the few groups in the world to break the silence about existence of involuntary electroshock for over two decades.

This people power is why Ray had somewhere to turn, when he asked his local library to find human rights organizations!

Celebrating its 23rd anniversary in 2009, MindFreedom International is a 100 percent independent nonprofit united to win activist campaigns for human rights and alternatives in mental health.

Open to the public, most members identify themselves as individuals who have personally experienced human rights violations in the mental health system.

MindFreedom is for people who want to unite “in a spirit of mutual cooperation” as the MFI mission statement begins.

Benefits include MindFreedom Journal, special web and e-mail networking, discount on purchases, MindFreedom Shield, member services office… and a nonviolent revolution in mental health.

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