For several years MindFreedom Lane County has asked the mental health agencies LaneCare and Lane County Mental Health to adopt specific guidelines to support the empowerment of mental health consumers and psychiatric survivors. Instead of quickly adopting specific and strong guidelines, Lane County has delayed for years, issuing draft guidelines that leave out many key points about self-determination, choice and full recovery. Here is a chronology.
A brief history of efforts by MindFreedom Lane County and other groups of consumers and allies to influence LaneCare and LCMH about mental health consumer empowerment
- May 2005 – MindFreedom Agenda is developed. Rob Rockstroh and Al Levine say in a meeting with MindFreedom Lane County that they basically support the agenda (but MindFreedom Lane County felt their support was vague).
- October 2006 MindFreedom Agenda used to create a 10 step checklist, to identify doable steps for which we can measure whether or not progress is being made.
- October 2007: 10 step checklist used to develop some recommendations that were endorsed by the LaneCare Peer Advisory Council
- LaneCare Operations council rejected those recommendations shortly thereafter. The Peer Advisory Council protested that rejection and asked for an explanation of why each recommendation had been rejected.
- February 2008: LaneCare Peer Advisory Council is folded into the Lane County Mental Health Consumer/Survivor Council. The Consumer Council votes to also endorse the recommendations and asks for an explanation of why they aren’t being acted on.
- April 2008: MindFreedom Lane County representatives talk to the Lane County County Commissioners, complaining that Consumer Council recommendations are being ignored
- May or June 2008: Draft of “Lane County and LaneCare Guidelines: Consumer Participation and Empowerment” is introduced, prepared by some combination of LaneCare & LCMH staff.
- Fall of 2008, Lane County Mental Health and Lane Care approve their draft guidelines.
- March of 2009: Lane County Mental Health Consumer/Survivor Council approves their own version of mental health consumer empowerment guidelines, and asks LaneCare for dialogue to explain why the differences between the two versions can or cannot be resolved. LaneCare states they are too busy to dialogue, and must wait until 2010.
- December 2009: MindFreedom Lane County representatives again appear in front of Lane County Commissioners about this process. Commissioner Pete Sorenson asks where the Lane County Mental Health Advisory Committee stands on this issue.
- 15 January 2010: MindFreedom Lane County representatives David Oaks, TC Dumas and Ron Unger present to the City Club of Eugene, and discuss the empowerment guideline debate. KLCC-FM news covers the story.
- 28 January 2010; Bruce Abel of LaneCare presents in front of the Lane County Mental Health Advisory Committee about the status of their guidelines. After some debate, MHAC affirms that Ron Unger will be on the agenda to speak on behalf of the Lane County Mental Health Consumer/Survivor Council at the February meeting.
- 31 January to 11 February 2010: Rob Rockstroh, director of Lane County Health and Human Services, exchanges e-mail with MindFreedom Lane County about the guidelines.
- 25 February 2010: Ron Unger to present the revised guidelines from the Lane County Mental Health Consumer/Survivor Council to the Lane County Mental Health Advisory Committee on Thurs., 24 February 2010.