Why We Need Alternatives to psychiatry – INTAR 2009 Conference w/Will Hall

Hi everyone, it’s been my honor over the past couple of years to be a friend and collaborator with Gianna Kali, whose work I admire greatly. Like all of us who know Gianna, I’m inspired by her passion, intelligence, and clarity as a writer, while at the same time concerned about her health and ongoing struggles with the consequences of psychiatric medications.

When Gianna put out a call for involvement with writing for the blog, I decided to become a Contributing Editor. I really encourage all readers and supporters of Beyond Meds to get the word out about the need for more writing submissions and editorial help, because Gianna’s health needs mean she has to step back.

Gianna remains the publisher and managing editor, and I look to her for guidance about what kinds of content fit here. I’ll be contributing links and original writing, as well as re-publishing past work and connecting with my my ongoing projects.

I recently returned from the  Rethinking Psychiatric Crisis: alternative responses to “first breaks” conference at New York University. Sponsored by the International Network Towards Alternatives for Recovery INTAR, the conference joined more than 200 researchers, people with psychiatric diagnoses, policymakers, clinicians, advocates, and family members from several countries including Finland and the UK.

The focus was how to understand and promote the growing number of effective and well researched residential alternatives to hospitals, medications, and labeling for people in severe crisis, including Soteria House, Open Dialog, the Runaway House, and the Parachute Project. Check out the slideshow, and more info at the Intar website. There’s also a slideshow over at the Madness Radio site if you’re interested.

You can listen to my keynote speech, Why we need alternatives,” here: and rt/cntrl click to download it here.

Also check the #intar tag on Twitter and on the Portland Hearing Voices Twitter feed here.

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