Behavior: Chemical Straitjackets

Children confined to mental institutions or reformatories are often sadly neglected by overworked staffs. But far worse, charges Indiana Democrat Birch Bayh, they are being "mentally handcuffed and made vegetables" by widespread overdosing with Thorazine and other potent tranquilizers. This week Bayh's Senate subcommittee on juvenile delinquency is holding hearings on allegations of drug misuse in both private and public institutions for children.

The problem, say Senate investigators, is that institution staffs find it easier to control troubled or obstreperous children when they are heavily sedated. Sometimes the results can be tragic. A North Carolina doctor and his wife blame the death...

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