The Megaphone Effect: Reclaiming Recovery

Emily Ladau, Editor in Chief of the Rooted in Rights Blog, is a passionate disability rights activist, writer, speaker, and digital communications consultant whose career began at the age of 10, when she appeared on several episodes of Sesame Street to educate children about her life with a physical disability. A native of Long Island, New York, Emily graduated with a B.A. in English from Adelphi University in 2013. In 2017, she was named as one of Adelphi’s 10 Under 10 Young Alumni. More about Emily’s work can be found on her website, Words I Wheel By, and her writing has been published on websites including The New York Times, SELF, Salon, Vice, and Huffington Post. Alongside her work as a writer, Emily has spoken before numerous audiences, ranging from a panel about the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act at the U.S. Department of Education, to the occupational therapy program at New York University. Follow her on Twitter at @emily_ladau.

10 responses to “The Megaphone Effect: Reclaiming Recovery

  1. This is a brave and honest appeal for more kindness toward those who are in need of treatment. The legislature has clearly overreacted. It’s terrible to demonize patients and treat them so harshly. May cooler, more enlightened heads prevail.

  2. We in Oregon have the ‘Oregon State Hospital’ and we are on the verge of building another secure psychiatric facility in Junction City, Oregon. We should be eliminating these mammoth big box institutions in favor of smaller, community based (sixteen bed) facilities with greater freedom and more access to therapeutic activities in the communities, such as education, work. recreation, nature, etc. The reason that big box institutions exist is to house individuals who are not compliant with their medications and have to be forcibly restrained and/or medicated or to house those whose brains have been permanently and cognitively damaged or physically disables by psychiatric drugging or lack of access to appropriate treatment (i.e. treatment that is culturally appropriate and trauma informed). We need to embrace a recovery model and respect that there are many roads to recovery, including those in which patients taper off all psychiatric medications. Choice and alternatives in the mental health system is what we need today. The pharmaceutical industry has created and fostered so many myths regarding mental illness that it is next to impossible to get support for individuals who wish to taper safely off their cocktails of toxic medications. We have a friend whose 35 year old son is being warehoused at Western State Hospital.

  3. Thank you. You give me hope that I can find ‘healing’ for myself … You have absolutely shown the ‘face’ of people who’ve lived with daunting, overwhelming challenges in a real, dignified way. This video is deeply powerful. I will share it with others.

  4. The mental health system is also falling apart in the UK. These patients are self-advocating, they deserve support and humane treatment, the legislators cannot be allowed to simply lock them up and throw away the keys. People recover.

  5. Special thanks goes to all who have been involved on the road to make this happen – whether mentioned by name or not. Without you and your continued efforts this may not have been possible.

    Please encourage your family, friends, neighbors and elected officials – at all levels to watch this short and powerful message.

    The time has come that we stand united in providing one another respect and human dignity … none deserve less.

  6. Thank you for taking the time to comment. We at DRW have very much appreciated the opportunity to collaborate with the patients and staff of ESH and WSH on this important project on which we have so much common ground.

  7. I am so proud of our patients from WSH and for the leadership of Laurel Lemke to stand up for them and with them. And the work they have put in to have their voice heard. I agree. The mental health system in this state and in our nation is as broken as I have every seen it in my 40 years working as a mental health therapist. The loses to our patients have been significant over the past 3 years and have had a negative impact on treatment and progress. I hope this will help to promote education, awareness leading to acceptance and change.

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