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Shield Alert Update for Charles Helmer 5/7/21

Charles shared with MFI today that there are no new shocks scheduled! Hooray!

Charles is grateful for your support and for the cessation of the shock, at least for now. But MFI views this victory with caution.

For a full restoration of Charles’ right to reject all future, harmful psychiatric ‘treatment’ he must have competent legal counsel. Legal counsel can help him overturn all existing and future court ordered treatment as well as win his right to choose his own guardian, one who will respect his rights.

Please consider making a donation to Charles’ legal expenses fund HERE. Even if you are unable to make a donation, please share with your friends!

Shield Alert Update for Charles Helmer 4/26/21

Shield members, please suspend your letter writing for the time being and take a well-deserved bow!

 
I am overjoyed to pass on the information that Charles’ scheduled shock for this Friday was cancelled!
 
Here is a message from Ann Fuller (Charles’ mom) which MFI received last week…..
 
“Hey they stopped Ect on Charles temporarily!!!!YEAH!!! Hopefully for good. No shock this Friday. Thank you all for your effort and kindness. Much appreciated!
Ann and Charles xo”
 
Thank you all Shield members who wrote hundreds of letters, emails, made calls, etc. You made a difference!!! Some of the many messages you sent in relation to this Shield alert are archived on a Facebook event on Network Against Psychiatric Assault HERE
 
As Justin Dart, considered by many to be the ‘father’ of the disability rights movement famously stated:
 
I Love you! Lead on!
 
All Shield members are leaders who take it upon themselves to advocate for other Shield members.
 
Today’s victory is significant even in light of the enormous psychiatric oppression we are fighting and the long road ahead.
 
Please continue to help us lead the effort for human rights in the mental health system, one person and one heart at a time. Never give up.
 
We will keep you apprised of Charles progress rejecting harmful treatment by force in the coming days and weeks. There are likely to be additional ways that you can help Charles permanently ensure that his agency and rights are respected.  A Go Fund Me site has been set up for Charles’ legal expenses. We will let you know about that and the other details in relation to his efforts to legally untangle himself from the net of forced psychiatry

Shield Alert Update for Charles Helmer 4/14/21

Thank you Shield members and volunteers for helping MindFreedom protect Charles Helmer.

 
You are making a difference!
 
But there is no time to lose. Charles next shock is scheduled for next Friday, April 23.
 
Charles wants to get back to his life. He misses reading his bible and playing the guitar. The combination of the tortuous shock and the neuroleptics (both oral and in the form of depot injections) have taken away his motivation and zeal for life while causing scary dystonic reactions requiring medical treatment
 
Notably, a different doctor will be shocking Charles at his next scheduled shock on Friday, April 23. Dr. Vine resigned from Charles’ ‘care’ and the name of the new shock doc is Dr. Ziad Nahas. As far as MFI can confirm, the shock location at Fairview Clinic is the same.
 
Charles is OK with people contacting Dr. Nahas. His contact information is:
 
Ziad Nahas, MD, MSCR
Vice-Chair for Clinical Affairs, Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
znahas@umn.edu
 
 
Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences
F282/2A West-B
8393A (Campus Delivery Code)
2450 Riverside Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55454
 
 
Perhaps the unfavorable exposure of working at a shock mill was too much for Dr. Vine. Shocking people in secret is preferable when there is a preponderance of evidence that shocking people causes brain damage.
 
 
Talking points for Dr. Nahas can be found on letters stored HERE
 
Ron Bassman, Executive Director of MFI received a call from a reporter at the Star Tribune who interviewed himand Anne Fuller. With a little luck, Charles will  get interviewed soon and a story will run soon despite the other important
but competing news in Minneapolis
 
Help us get favorable coverage for Charles through the Star Tribune
 
to submite a letter to the editor of the Star Tribune click HERE
 
 

Talking points can be found on letters stored HERE

 
A couple of days ago, we got word that the following legislator put a call out to the CEO of Fairview, where Charles is being shock.
 
The legislator who made the call is
 
Erik Mortensen
State Representative District 55A
331 State Office Building
St. Paul, MN 55155
651-296-8872   
 
Maybe this would be a good time for folks to double down on their attempts to contact the legislators.
 
 
Thanks to Jim Gottstein, you can send an email to the entire state legislature simultanously by addressing your email to: 
 
minnlegislators@networkagainstpsychiatricassault.org
 
In a future update, we will tell you how you can send letters of support to Charles Helmer. Healing from psychiatric harm requires the support of community.
 
In the meantime, let’s join together and take action to stop his next shock!
 
MFI
 

Shield Alert Update for Charles Helmer 4/10/2021

This is to let you know Charles Helmer was electroshocked against his will last Friday, April 9th despite our combined efforts.  His next shock is scheduled for April 23rd and then another one two weeks later. There is no time to waste to stop the next shock. Please consider two actions right away: contact all of the state legislators in Minnesota simulatanously by using the following email provided (see below).
 
Additional actions are listed at the very bottom of this update and will be sent to everyone who is enrolled in the Shield or receives updates for Charles Helmer’s Shield campaign. If you would like to enroll in the Shield view HERE for more information or email office(at) mindfreedom.org with ‘Add me to Shield alert list’ in the subject heading
 
The e-mail address to send to the whole Minnesota Legislature is minnlegislators@networkagainstpsychiatricassault.org
 
 
Full contact information for Minnesotal Legislators is at http://networkagainstpsychiatricassault.org/mfialerts/CharlesHelmer/Legislators/
 
We think Charles’ state representative and senator are:
 
State Senator Kari Dziedzic
 
State Representative Mohamud Noor
 

Contact the US Lawmakers who represent Charles Helmer

Senator Amy Smith’s St. Paul office is 651-221-1016.  

Senator Klobuchar’s Washington number is 202-224-3244 and her Minneapolis ones are 612-727-5220 and toll free at 888-224-9043.

Representative Ilhan Omar’s Washington phone number is (202) 225-4755 and her Minneapolis number is (612) 333-1272.

Another Shield member suggested that we flood the patient relations department of the facility where Charles is getting shocked with calls or emails. 

M Health Fairview Patient Relations 

612-672-1000 

patientrelations@fairview.org

Shield Alert Update for Charles Helmer 4/5/2021

First posted 3-22-2021 Updated on 3/26/2021. 3/30/21, updated 4/2/2021, 4/3/2021, 4/5/2021 and 4/10/22021, Today’s recommended action:

The motto of Fairview, the facility where Charles receives his outpatient shock has this motto on its website HERE:

“Heal More. Hurt Less”

That is why we need your help! Make Fairview live up to its rhetoric and stop harming Charles Helmer!

We now have only 3 business days left to pressure public officials to stop the next forced shock treatment of Charles Helmer. His next scheduled shock is this Friday, April 9th, 2021.

Charles’ supporters had a virtual meeting today involving Charles’ mother, her attorney and our committee about legal strategy for his protection. In the meantime, we must continue to apply public pressure! Please join us by taking action today. Why is Charles being treated so horribly?

Please call the office for developmental disabilities at 651-757-1800 and let them know that Charles Helmer, a disabled individual, needs protection from harmful, forced electroshock.  Since Charles self identifies as autistic, he is a protected individual. As our friends at Surviving Race, Disability, and Justice make clear, the right of individuals to reject harmful psychiatric ‘treatment’ intersects many other movements for social justice, including the disability rights movement. If you know someone within the neurodiversity/autism community, please let them know that Charles needs their support today!

Also, please note that Shield members who alerted James Hereford in accordance with our last update reported that the email address we had posted for him is invalid. If you used the invalid email address in a previous action (jhereford@fairview.org) please resend your message to jherefo1@fairview.org or his personal email address jameshereford@me.com‎ or call him at one of two phone numbers we found on record for him:

1-651-982-7122
425-353-7966 

Shield Alert Update for Charles Helmer 4/3/2021

Thank you for your continued help to stop the forced shocking of Charles Helmer, aged 22.  As you know, Charles was subjected to forced daily drugging and shock every two weeks under an involuntary commitment order you can view HERE

Charles has told several people who are currently in charge of his treatment, “I hate how the drugs make me feel! I hate how the shock makes me feel!” I can’t work! I don’t have any motivation!”

He stated, “They don’t care!”

Recently, Charles shared that he doesn’t believe he has ‘schizophrenia’ a stigmatizing diagnosis that is being used to justify his harsh treatment. A psychiatrist who has only known him for a couple of days, responded by asking Charles”So you think you are perfectly normal?”

Charles’ next scheduled shock is Friday, April 9th which means we have no time to lose. 

Charles’ court appointed attorney  did not return Jim Gottstein’s call and given the timeframe, it is increasingly clear that Charles needs a new attorney, one who will help Charles fight state sanctioned torture. Charle’s ad hoc committee uploaded several  publicly available legal documents HERE which includes the court order for shock torture.

While members of the committee stategize how to secure competent legal counsel in Minnesota to reverse this travesty, your help is urgently needed to apply public pressure to people who can make a difference!  Please take action as soon as possible to stop the next scheduled shock on Friday April 9, 2021!

 

Contact James Hereford, Fairview President and CEO

Call James Hereford–Message should be brief and respectful. If you attempt to correspond directly with James Hereford, please use respectful, non-violent, in accordance with MFI values.
Ask why Charles Helmer is receiving such severe treatment. What is the basis or justification for shocking Charles?
1-651-982-7122
425-353-7966 

Email  James Hereford (please cc office@mindfreedom.org) A sample email can be found HERE

Personal email: jameshereford@me.com‎

Write a formal letter (Sample HERE) and send it overnight delivery to

James Hereford

Fairview President and CEO

2450 Riverside Avenue

Minneapolis, MN 55454 United States

Contact Dr. Vine, the shock doc

M Health Fairview Mental Health and Addiction Services

Attn: Dr. Craig Vine M.D.

(not ‘Vines’ as previously stated)

525 23Rd Ave. S.

Minneapolis, MN 55454-1455

612-273-6113

If you attempt to correspond directly with Dr. Vine, please use respectful, non-violent, in accordance with MFI values.

His professional email address is:

cjvinemd@umn.edu

His personal address is: 

cjvinemd@yahoo.com

His social media sites are:

https://www.linkedin.com/in/craig-vine-92b7319

https://mobile.twitter.com/cjvinemd

https://m.facebook.com/people/_/1348336235

 Behind-the-scenes efforts will continue in the following areas:

  • Line up national leaders and scientific allies to write letters and submit testimony 
  • Continue to identify and work with peer activists in Minnesota to be boots on the ground
  • Identify state and county officials/policy makers and lawmakers and apply public pressure.
  • Obtain media exposure. See MFI’s Press Release HERE and press contacts below

The following is the Shield Alert Update for Charles Helmer dated March 29, 2021 (by Jim Gottstein, PsychRights)

If you haven’t heard, Charles was indeed shocked last Friday despite our efforts to stop it.  If you are seeing this alert for the first time, you can scroll down for the full story at midway below Jim’s updates)

It is now believed that his scheduled forcible electroshocks are every two weeks, however, not every week as we thought.  That gives us a little more time before his next unwanted electroshock, but there is still no time to waste.

We are trying to see what we might be able to do to challenge the court order, but it will take some time to even get plugged into what went on in the court.  In connection with that if you live in Minneapolis or St. Paul and might be willing to obtain some court documents, please e-mail Jim Gottstein at jim.gottstein(at)psychrights.org

We are putting together some additional actions for you to take, but they are not quite ready to launch so let’s keep doing what we have been for now.  There are a list of actions towards the bottom of the MindFreedom Shield Alert for Charles.

A number of people have used the online contact form for the Governor and gotten back a particularly unsatisfactory form response.  I am thinking it would therefore be good for as many people as possible to call the Governor’s office to ask him to intervene to stop, or at least investigate the Forcible Electroshocking of Charles Helmer.   It is okay to be firm, but it is very important to be polite and respectful.  I know that can be hard because of the great abuse the state of Minnesota is inflicting on Charles, but we will be dismissed as a bunch of lunatics if we are not. 

Governor of Minnesota

Staffed office hours are: Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM

Telephone Numbers: 651-201-3400

Toll Free: 800-657-3717

Minnesota Relay: 800-627-3529

I will appreciate it if you can let us know that you called the governor or whatever action you take in support of Charles.  There is a Facebook Event Page where, if you are on Facebook, you can post about your call or other action directly (I think), or you could e-mail me back with your report and I will post it.  I know a lot of people are not on Facebook for good reasons, but I think it is good to have a place like that where people can see how much is being done to try and stop Charles Helmer from being Electroshocked against his will.

I think good talking points can be extracted from the following e-mail by Joseph and Susan Rogers to the Minnesota Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities.  If you are on Facebook you can also look at what other people have written on Charles’ Facebook Event Page to use when you call the Governor’s office.

Letter from Ron Bassman, PhD, Executive Director of MindFreedom

Email to the Ombudsman in Minnesota from Susan Rogers and Joseph Rogers HEREIn any event,

Charles will greatly appreciate whatever you can do to help him get the Electroshock stopped.

Original Shield Alert posted on 3/22/21 

Last year, we issued a Shield alert for Charles Helmer, 21 years old, when he was locked up at Regions Hospital in Minnesota. Thanks in part to his mother’s advocacy and Shield members who wrote letters and made calls on his behalf, he was discharged to his mother’s care and the shock stopped, at least at that time.

Today, Charles Helmer, now aged 22, is activating his Shield again. While being detained at Fairview Riverside Psychiatric Clinic at the University of Minnesota, he was involuntarily committed. Today, after being discharged, he is court-ordered to live in a group home and report, once a week, for regular shock ‘treatment’. Charles has committed no crime and is not a danger to himself or others. He asks for your help in protecting him from ECT.

Notably, the facility where Charles was recently confined has some serious issues. In 2018, two federal lawsuits were filed against Fairview hospital in as a result of patient rights violations. To view local media coverage of these lawsuits, view

HERE

When a traumatized individual behaves strangely or experiences adverse reactions to toxic pharmacology, many psychiatrists escalate the diagnosis and treatment. Initiating shock is not a substitute for compassion, de-prescribing, and greater social support!

Ron Bassman, a shock survivor and Executive Director of MindFreedom states “No matter what the circumstances, forced shock is unacceptable.  It is torture.  No one deserves to lose their autonomy under the guise of helpful psychiatric treatment.”

It is concerning that someone who is living peaceably in the community can be subjected to harmful, forced shock on a weekly basis, at tax-payers expense against his/her expressed consent.

Charles is an intelligent and spiritual man who likes to play the guitar and read the Bible. He likes video games and wants to visit his friends and family members. He is not allowed to leave the premises of the group home currently. People who know Charles describe him as having a great sense of humor. He is concerned about losing his personality—the things he values— due to the loss of his liberties, forced drugging and shock. He shared “After a shock, I forget my personality; I have to ask people “Am I still funny?’ “Is this funny?”

Read HERE or HERE to view some of the documented evidence about harmful shock.

Read about some of the annual worldwide protests against shock HERE.

Use the search engine on MFI’s website using the word ‘shock’ to find 557 archived pages on the topic of shock.

For more details about Charles’ story click HERE or go straight to actions below. There is no time to waste:

Charles’ next scheduled shock is next Friday, March 26 (now updated to Friday, April 9th)

Please help us protect Charles by taking one or more actions before this date!

Demand that the staff at Fairview Mental Health Clinic- stop subjecting Charles Helmer to harmful shock against his will.

Please write letters to the medical facility where Charles is being shocked and send a copy to office@mindfreedom.org OR post your letter to the Facebook Event Page on Network Against Psychiatric Assault HERE

Or contact the doctor performing the shock (see his contact information below). Be sure to keep all correspondence respectful and cc ‘office@mindfreedom.org

 

M Health Fairview Mental Health and Addiction Services

Attn: Dr. Craig Vine M.D.

(not ‘Vines’ as previously stated)

525 23Rd Ave. S.

Minneapolis, MN 55454-1455

612-273-6113

Note: The following is Dr. Vine’s personal email address as well as his social media pages. MFI has not yet located his professional email address. If you attempt to correspond directly with Dr. Vine, please use respectful, non-violent, in accordance with MFI values.

cjvinemd@yahoo.com

https://www.linkedin.com/in/craig-vine-92b7319

https://mobile.twitter.com/cjvinemd

https://m.facebook.com/people/_/1348336235

 

Report Abuse of Vulnerable Individuals HERE or

Contact the Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities

Aaron Dierks

Aaron.P.Dierks@state.mn.us

Regional Ombudsman | OMHDD

Write Letters to the Minnesota Office of Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities

Aaron Dierks

121 7th Place E, Suite 420

Metro Square Bldg

Saint Paul, MN 55101

O: 651-757-1811

C: 651-529-0448

F: 651-797-1956

Toll Free: 1-800-657-3506

Information Technology for Minnesota Government | mn.gov/omhdd/

Write to the Governor of Minnesota: (remember to send a copy to office@mindfreedom.org)
SAMPLE LETTER from the National Mental Health Consumers Self-Help HERE

Address:

Office of Governor

Tim Walz & Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan

130 State Capitol 75

Rev Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

St. Paul, MN 55155

 

Call the Governor of Minnesota

Staffed office hours are: Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM

Telephone Numbers Telephone: 651-201-3400

Toll Free: 800-657-3717

Minnesota Relay: 800-627-3529

Fax: 651-797-1850

 

Contact the governor via contact form on government website

https://mn.gov/governor/contact/

 

Media Action Alert Submit a letter to the editor of local newspapers;

Star Tribune Submit letter to the editor using this online submission form: http://www.startribune.com/opinion/

Minnesota Daily

Submit Letters to the Editor to the Minnesota Daily by emailing letters@mndaily.com. Note: All letters must include the writer’s name, address and phone number for verification. All submissions should be exclusive to the Minnesota Daily. The Daily reserves the right to edit all letters for style, space, libel and grammar. Letters to the editor should be no more than 500 words in length. The Daily reserves the right to print any submission as a letter or guest column. Submission does not guarantee publication.

Please take action today to help us Shield Charles from further harm!

 

If you want more details about Charles’ story, click HERE

 

Remember, the spirit of the Shield: “All for one and one for all!’ To enroll in the Shield, click on the Shield logo below!