Activist Alert!

KATU TV will be broadcasting what looks to be a Halloween spoof about the Oregon State Hospital. ‘Prisoners on the loose: Investigating security at the state mental hospital.’

UPDATE!  Thursday, Feb. 9 – KATU’s video teaser for their “expose” (which began with an ominously intoned “Dangerous mental patients!”) has mysteriously vanished from their website and from YouTube.  We await their apology.

The Mental Health Association of Portland has sifted through a lot of crap news stories about the Oregon State Hospital – but this looks to be a doozy.

What’s true? The hospital HAD four basic problems – decrepit and dangerous buildings, demoralized under-educated staff, stigma / fear / panic on the part of just about everyone but especially mental health providers and the media, and the association with Psychiatric Security Review Board.

Number one is resolved. Number two is changing fast. Number three, as evidenced by Dan Tilken‘s hysterical reporting above, is still a basic every day problem. Number four was addressed with major legislative changes in 2010.

Tonight KATU is the problem, not the solution. Too bad Dan couldn’t find a real story.

Care to comment about this stereotyping, fearmongering, ‘news’ piece? Call KATU News Director Don Pratt at 503-231-3508; or reporter Dan Tilken at 503-231-4264;

UPDATE – Disability Rights Oregon, NAMI Oregon, NAMI Clackamas County (and probably others, did you know there are slightly more mental health advocacy organizations in Oregon than there are mental health advocates?) have jumped onboard and messaged their members to contact KATU and speak up and speak out!.

SEE – Tonight! KATU Wants Everyone to Be Afraid of Marauding Crazy People!, Mercury, 2/9/2012