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Mandatory Antidepressants for Children?

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

mandatory depression screening for students

Story at-a-glance -

  • A bill that would require mandatory depression screening for public school students was introduced in New Jersey but was vetoed by Gov. Phil Murphy in January 2020
  • The bill would have applied to students in seventh through 12th grade
  • With their parents’ consent, the students would have filled out a computerized screening intended to identify signs of depression
  • The bill raised serious controversy, however, in part because the confidentiality of the screenings was in question, as was the potential for false positives
  • The bill was introduced as a way to reduce the rising rates of teen suicide in the state, but the first-line treatment for depression is typically antidepressant drugs, which have been shown to increase suicide risk in teens

New Jersey has seen a coordinated campaign aimed at furthering the reach of Big Pharma and limiting residents’ rights to health freedom. In January 2020, a bill to eliminate religious vaccine exemptions narrowly failed to pass the state Legislature. A bill that would require mandatory depression screening for public school students was also introduced, but was vetoed by Gov. Phil Murphy.

The bill would have applied to students in seventh through 12th grade. With their parents’ consent, the students would have filled out a computerized screening intended to identify signs of depression. Assemblyman Dr. Herb Conaway, D-Burlington, who proposed the bill, said in a news release, “This is a way to make sure that every kid gets screened, so that we can prevent future tragedies.”


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