Interim staff

Lloyd Schrier, who, as a preborn child was subjected to 29 electroconvulsive shock treatments and enough drugs to induce sleep in his mother for a month, has been refused any compensation by both the Canadian government and the courts.

Everyone agrees that Lloyd Schrier received these brainwashing treatments, but under the restrictive definition used by the compensation panel, Lloyd was excluded from receiving any restitution.

His mother has received humanitarian and compassionate compensation of $100,000 along with 76 other former patients of the late Dr. Ewen Cameron who were subjected to his notorious brainwashing program, a program which was supported in part by the C.I.A.

Applicants did not have to prove damages to be compensated, only that they were a “depatterned person” which was defined as “a person who received full or substantial depatterning treatment at the Allan Memorial Institute in Montreal between 1950 and 1965 as a patient of Dr. Ewen Cameron.”

Depatterning treatment was defined as “prolonged sleep followed by massive electroshock treatments, reducing the patient’s mind to a childlike state.

The Federal Court of Canada upheld the panel’s decision to twice reject Schrier’s claim.

Mr. Justice Yvon Pinard wrote, “… a child is by necessity a person who is born. Indeed, assuming that the applicant, while he was a fetus was a patient of Dr. Cameron, it is only common sense that he could not have then received any treatment which could have had the effect of reducing his mind to a childlike state, which is a state a fetus has not yet even reached.”

Schrier’s mother had been pregnant for about a month when she was diagnosed by psychiatrist Dr. Cameron as suffering from severe depression.

A type note dated February 6, 1960, the day she was admitted to his “depatterning program” at the Allan Memorial Institute states: “patient to be given treatment in the therapy unit under special precautions.”

Under “Reasons for this and procedure suggested” is a single handwritten word: “Pregnancy” and a prescription for 60 milligrams of Anectine, a trademark brand of the muscle relaxant succinylcholine chloride.

“Cameron was dealing with a pregnant woman and he knew it. He knew it for sure.” Schrier told the Interim. “It was in his notes that my mother was pregnant. There were really two people there. It’s not the money I want, but the recognition, the admission, that I was wronged too.”

Dr. Gideon Koren, director of paediatric pharmacology and toxicology at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children, wrote a letter to the Federal Court supporting Mr. Schrier’s appeal: “[There is] ample evidence that barbiturates, such as those used in the depatterning, … cross the placenta and achieve high concentrations in the fetus.” His participation is no different from that of unborn babies exposed to thalidomide or diethylstilbestrol [DES] through their mother.”

Dr. Koren said in an interview reported in the Globe and Mail, Sept. 26, that Mr. Schrier “may not have been a patient in the usual sense but he received the treatment. It was known electroconvulsive therapy wasn’t safe.” (with reports from The Globe & Mail)