Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Ransom Notes Update

The following e-mail was sent out today to many people who commented on the Ransom Notes advertisements by the NYU Child Study Center, which were withdrawn in December after massive protest against their portrayal of autistics and others with neurological differences as tragic kidnap victims. It is a response to the demand by ASAN and other organizations for meaningful dialogue that includes people with disabilities.

Even if you did not contact the NYU Child Study Center to comment on the ads, the follow-up discussion on February 26 will provide an opportunity for you to express your views regarding stigma, stereotypes, and other issues of concern, and to suggest a more positive direction for awareness-raising publicity campaigns.


When we launched our “Ransom Notes” public awareness campaign this December, our intent was to spark a dialogue about America’s last silent public health crisis – the millions of children who suffer from untreated psychiatric and learning disorders. The campaign truly caught the public’s attention. We received thousands of calls and letters from parents, mental health professionals, educators, advocates, and concerned third parties, all of whom are passionate about helping children. Many people enthusiastically praised the campaign, others were deeply troubled, and some saw both perspectives.

We were so encouraged by the thoughtful response of our active community of caring parents and advocates for children that we plan to take advantage of this momentum with an online forum - not just about the campaign, but about what we can do together to improve awareness and care for children’s mental health. We need your help to do this. We invite all to participate and share their thoughts, insights and opinions at on Tuesday, February 26 from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm, EST.

At the Child Study Center, in addition to our research, clinical care, and professional education efforts, we work to bring issues surrounding child and adolescent mental health to the top of America's agenda. We invite you to partner with us to give children and their families equal access to health insurance, remove the stigma that the term "psychiatric disorder" so clearly still elicits, and, most importantly, support the drive to make research and science-based treatment a national priority.

We hope you join us on February 26th and add your voice.


Harold S. Koplewicz, M.D.Director, NYU Child Study Center;Arnold and Debbie Simon Professor and Chair, Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry;Sr. Vice President and Vice Dean for External Affairs, NYU Medical Center;Professor of Pediatrics, NYU School of Medicine;Director, Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Bellevue Hospital Center;Director, Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research


Club 166 said...


I wrote Koplewicz, his boss, the university president, and the board of directors, and nobody sent me an e-mail. Perhaps they didn't send one out to everyone.


asansouthwestohio said...

The post has now been edited to clarify that not everyone who commented got the e-mail.

Thanks Joe.