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Coalition to Stop Institutional Violence records

 Collection
Identifier: M027

Overview

The Coalition to Stop Institutional Violence was founded in Boston in 1975 in response to the proposed establishment of a "special unit for violent women" at Worcester State Hospital. Comprising ex-mental patients, mental health workers, and prisoner rights groups, the Coalition launched an extensive letter-writing campaign forcing the Department of Mental Health to hold public hearings on the need for the unit. Widespread opposition to the plan prevented the unit from ever opening. The Coalition went on to protest the development of other "special units" at various Massachusetts facilities before disbanding in 1988.

Dates

  • 1972-1989 (bulk 1976-1981)

Creator

Conditions Governing Access:

The collection is unrestricted.

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use:

Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be discussed with the University Archivist.

Historical Note

The Coalition to Stop Institutional Violence was founded in 1975 in Boston.  The group was a comprised of ex-mental patients, mental health workers, and prisoner rights groups.  The Coalition formed in response to the construction of a "special unit for violent women" from state mental hospitals and state prisons at Worcester State Hospital.  Through an extensive letter writing project the Coalition forced the Department of Mental Health to hold public hearings required by the Determination of Need process.  Due to numerous testimonies in opposition to the unit and documentation showing the unfeasibility of the unit, it did not receive funding and never opened.

In addition to their work against the Worcester Women's Unit, the Coalition to Stop Institutional Violence attended numerous public meetings and conducted letter writing projects against other "special units."  These projects included the Worcester Regional Adolescent Program, an Adult Psychiatric Unit and later a Pediatric Psychiatric Unit at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in Worcester and a "special unit for violent women" at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Framingham.  The group disbanded in 1988.

Extent

4.40 cubic feet (14 containers)

System of Arrangement:

Organized into 3 series: 1. Administration; 2. Project Files; and 3. Related Issues.

Physical Location

71/2

Bibliography

  • History of the Coalition to Stop Institutional Violence [M27, Box 1, Folder 12]
Title
Finding aid for the Coalition to Stop Institutional Violence Records
Author
Finding aid prepared by Deborah Richards
Date
August 1998
Language of description
Description Is In English

Repository Details

Part of the Northeastern University Archives and Special Collections Repository

Contact:
92 Snell Library
Northeastern University
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston MA 02115 US