HUGE WIN FOR ABLECHILD: Tennessee Lawmakers Draft Bill to Help Identify Link Between Mental Health Drugs and Mass Shooters | Joe Hoft

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HUGE WIN FOR ABLECHILD: Tennessee Lawmakers Draft Bill to Help Identify Link Between Mental Health Drugs and Mass Shooters

 

AbleChild had a huge win in the Tennessee legislature yesterday as a bill that helps identify the link between mental health drugs and mass shooters has moved on to the Senate. 

Sheila Mathews from AbleChild and Amy Miller from ReformPharma worked together to get this bill in place and their work paid off.

The Tennessee Star reported:

Sheila Matthews, co-founder of the national non-profit parent organization AbleChild, and activist Amy Miller with the Reform Pharma initiative of Children’s Health Defense, detailed the progress a bill that would help determine the link between Big Pharma drugs and mass shooters has made in the Tennessee General Assembly since its introduction.

The bill, SB 2937/HB 2933, is focused on reforming the process medical examiner’s offices must follow in terms of testing for psychiatric and psychotropic drugs when performing autopsies on the bodies of mass shooters.

The legislation, sponsored by State Representative Mary Littleton (R-Dickson) and State Senator Rusty Crowe (R-Johnson City), was essentially written by Matthews, Miller, and activist Bernadette Pajer.

Matthews said the bill was stalled for a short period of time as lawmakers decided to cut a portion of the bill dealing with behavioral health accountability – specifically the prohibition of police working with behavioral health vendors in an investigation directly related to a behavioral health incident involving a mass shooting or suicide.

“The behavioral health accountability section of the bill was taken out because the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation was really concerned about tying the police hands with working with the behavioral health vendors,” Matthews explained on Wednesday’s edition of The Michael Patrick Leahy Show.

“However, we agreed on new language that would make sure that the behavioral health industry isn’t unduly influencing the investigators and that when there’s a clear, compelling interest that we can go to the courts to ascertain certain materials that are protected by HIPAA. That’s huge,” Matthews added.

Matthews went on to say that the legislation was initially mischaracterized by Crowe as an “anti-police bill” due to the language that has since been removed from the bill.

Congratulations to AbleChild and ReformPharma for pushing forward a bill that will begin looking into the connection between Big Pharma and mass shooters.  

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