The Florida chapter of the Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR) is one of six finalists in the 2023 Platinum Awards in the category of Activism/Advocacy. Out of thousands of entries from across the world, CCHR was picked as a finalist for their work to protect mental health human rights in the area of coercive psychiatry. 
CCHR has long fought to restore basic inalienable human rights to the field of mental health, including, but not limited to, full informed consent regarding the medical legitimacy of psychiatric diagnosis, the risks of psychiatric treatments, the right to all available medical alternatives and the right to refuse any treatment considered harmful.
Coercive psychiatry, which encompasses all forms of involuntary examination, commitment and treatment, had become one of the major sources of mental health human rights violations in Florida and so this subject became a focal point for CCHR.
Comprised of a vast volunteer network, CCHR Florida’s chapter worked to expose the flagrant abuse of the use of involuntary psychiatric examination, called a Baker Act in Florida, which has been a long controversial law in the state, responsible for hundreds of thousands of involuntary psychiatric examinations each year. 
Diane Stein, the President for the Florida chapter of CCHR, worked closely with her team to develop a PR and communications strategy to expose the mental health human rights abuses committed using the Baker Act. The strategy involved partnering with organizations with similar goals to create a grass roots movement, investigative news stories and social media which was all designed to place enough pressure on Florida lawmakers that they would make the issue a priority. As a result, the number of Baker Acts in Florida dropped three straight years.
In total, their communications campaign reached tens of millions in the state of Florida and resulted in positive legislation that carried out their goal of protecting mental health human rights and reducing the number of involuntary psychiatric examinations across the state.
About CCHR: Initially established by the Church of Scientology and renowned psychiatrist Dr. Thomas Szasz in 1969, CCHR’s mission is to eradicate abuses committed under the guise of mental health and enact patient and consumer protections. L. Ron Hubbard, founder of Scientology, first brought psychiatric imprisonment to wide public notice: “Thousands and thousands are seized without process of law, every week, over the ‘free world’ tortured, castrated, killed. All in the name of ‘mental health,’” he wrote in March 1969.
 2023 Platinum Awards – prnewsonline.com/go/2023-platinum-pr-awards/
 Baker Act Reporting Center – usf.edu/cbcs/baker-act/documents/usf_barc_ar_2021_2022.pdf
Citizens Commission on Human Rights of Florida
109 North Fort Harrison Avenue
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