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International Society for Ethical Psychology and Psychiatry

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The International Society for Ethical Psychology & Psychiatry (ISEPP) was previously known as ICSPP (International Center for the Study of Psychiatry and Psychology).


The International Center for the Study of Psychiatry and Psychology (ICSPP) is a nonprofit (503c) research and educational network whose focus is the critical study of the mental health professions and their consumer markets. ICSPP was originally founded in 1971 by psychiatrist Dr. Peter Breggin and his wife, Ginger Breggin. ICSPP publishes the scholarly journal, Ethical Human Sciences and Services.

ICSPP is concerned with the impact of mental health theories on public policy and the effects of therapeutic practices upon individual well-being, personal freedom, and family and community values. ICSPP has focused on delivering warnings about the potential dangers of psychiatric drugs, electroshock, psychosurgery, and the biological theories of psychiatry, and alerting the media and the public to the dangers of treating social, interpersonal and personal problems essentially as though they were strictly medical diseases. ICSPP contends the mental health field itself suffers a collective form of cognitive impairment, and have evolved to become completely lacking in the application of fundamental health care tenets (e.g., 'first, do no harm', 'informed consent', 'patient autonomy').


ICSPP is concerned with the impact of mental health theories on public policy and the effects of therapeutic practices upon individual well-being, personal freedom, and family and community values. For over 25 years ICSPP has been informing the professions, the media and the public about the potential dangers of drugs, electroshock, psychosurgery, and the biological theories of psychiatry.

ICSPP focus is on critiques of the so-called medical model of psychiatry, that is, the theory that people who behave in ways neither understood nor approved by society at large have something wrong with their bodies or brains, requiring the physical intervention of doctors using such techniques as drugs, electroshock and lobotomy. ICSPP has studied the research, and documented the negative results of applying this theory, and strongly believe it still lacks a scientific foundation and remains unproven.


ICSPP contributed to the following accomplishments:

1970s: Stopping the wide-scale resurgence of lobotomy and psychosurgery on adults and children, and stopping of all known psychosurgery on children and all psychosurgery in federal and state institutions.


1970s: The creation of the federal Psychosurgery Commission by Congress.


1983: Alerting the profession to the danger of [[tardive dyskinesia] in children. Tardive dyskinesia is a potentially devastating neurological disorder involving involuntary muscle movements caused by neuroleptic or antipsychotic drugs.


1983: Alerting the profession to the danger of dementia produced by longer-term use of neuroleptic drugs.


1985: Causing the FDA to force pharmaceutical companies to put in their labels for neuroleptic drugs a new class warning on tardive dyskinesia.


early 1990s: The withdrawal of a large multi-agency federal program to perform dangerous invasive experiments on inner-city children in search of supposed genetic and biochemical causes of violence (the violence initiative).


early 1990s: The initial cancellation and later modification of a potentially racist federally sponsored conference on the theorized genetics of violence.


1992-94: Alerting the profession to danger of down-regulation and dangerous withdrawal reactions from the new SSRI antidepressants, such as Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil.


1973 to the present: Monitoring and at times modifying or stopping unethical, hazardous experimental research on children (1973 to the present).


Each of these critiques was initially considered highly controversial, and each was opposed by organized psychiatry. However, most are now accepted as rational, scientifically founded, and ethical by helping professions in general. For example, psychosurgery is no longer widely practiced and not at all in state or federal institutions or on children in the United States; the multi-agency federal research program aimed at using invasive biological procedures on inner-city children has been disbanded; the conference on the genetics of violence was delayed and then vastly modified; all experts now recognize the dangers of tardive dyskinesia in children; many researchers have confirmed that the neuroleptic drugs produce dementia; and experienced doctors as well as a burgeoning literature now recognize the likelihood for dangerous, paradoxical, or persistent withdrawal effects from the SSRIs.


Today, ICSPP members focus on several issues, including: The pharmaceutical industry's stranglehold (by means of money) on the mental health professions, on mental health research, and on mental health policy-making;


The establishment of drug-free residential treatment centers for severe emotional distress;


The abolition of coercive or involuntary treatments and interventions;


The impact of biological psychiatry on children, notably the use of behavior-altering drugs such as stimulants to control behavior and boost rote educational performance.


In a field where nearly all of the professional organizations, research institutes, and lay organizations are underwritten by money from the pharmaceutical industry, we are proud to remain a loud and independent voice in favor of humane values in the mental health field.

See also


External links

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