NCOR Workshops in DC Gather 250+ People

Submitted by will on Wed, 03/14/2007 - 22:45

Anarchists and animal rights activists, labor organizers and globalization protestors, feminists, Zapatistas, permaculturists, silkscreeners, zinesters, vegans, peaceniks, spring break kids and everything beyond and in between jammed into lecture rooms and sprawled out onto the lawn in gorgeous 67 degreee weather at American University for the National Conference on Organized Resistance - NCOR. After a hectic time trying to plan and prepare to go, NCOR once again turned out to be a smash success and a lot of fun, meeting activists from around the country and helping people figure out how to live healthy lives in a society gone mad.

Icarus joined Freedom Center for the fourth year offering Resisting Corporate Psychiatry and Wellness Alernatives for Madness and Mental Health workshops. More than 250 mostly college aged young people filled all the seats, lined the walls, spread out on the floor, and spilled into the halls for these overcrowded workshops, eager to hear our experiences with what's wrong with psychiatry in a crazy society and to discuss ideas of how to take care of each other. Mollie Hurter of Freedom Center and Will Hall of Freedom Center and Icarus facilitated the workshops, with Leah Harris of DC and John Judge, one of the original psych survivor organizers from the 1970s, joining in. Sarah was also there representing Misled Youth.

Workshop discussion covered what do to if someone is suicidal, help getting to sleep, med side effects, coming off drugs and alcohol, advance directives and mad maps, herbal remedies, Freedom Center's NADA ear acupuncture clinic, diagnosis as a self-fulfilling prophecy, therapists and staff as allies, dealing with Tourettes and OCD, alternatives for people with attention problems, support group structure, the science behind acupuncture, the question of lack of insight, links between radical mental health and other movement issues, and a dip into the paranoia depths with MKULTRA and government mind control research.

People connected for ongoing meetings in DC, and several people sought advice and support in starting radical mental health groups in their communities, from North Carolina to Virginia.

Some of the comments included: That was an amazing workshop, I love the Icarus Project! ... I'm so glad you guys are here, this is really important.... That's the first time I've had a chance to talk about this in front of people before.... I have tried to commit suicide just recently and I really need to be able to talk about it without fearing being locked up, so this discussion really means a lot to me.... i just wanted to say that the workshops were super inspiring. also, you are really good at talking...thank you.


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