Martin Whitely


Martin Whitely
Martin Whitely
Incumbent
Assumed office
10 February 2001
Preceded by Clive Brown
Constituency Bassendean
Personal details
Born 19 October 1959 (1959-10-19) (age 52)
Perth Western Australia
Nationality Australian
Political party Australian Labor Party
Profession Teacher

Martin Paul Whitely was born on 19 October 1959 in Perth, Australia. He has been a Labor member of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly since February 2001. He represented the electorate of Roleystone from 2001 to 2005 and, following the abolition of Roleystone, has represented the electorate of Bassendean since 2005.[1]

Whitely was the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Forestry from August 2006 until the Carpenter government lost office in September 2008.

Anti-ADHD Child Drugging Advocacy

When elected in 2001, Mr Whitely advocated for tighter stimulant prescribing controls arguing Western Australia (WA) had excessive ADHD child prescribing rates.

Before Whitely entered parliament the number of Western Australians prescribed ADHD stimulants was 20,648 (year 2000). The WA Health Department estimated 85-90% (approximately 18,000) were children.[2] Western Australian prescribing rates continued to grow until the introduction of tighter ADHD amphetamine prescribing accountability measures in late 2003. Since then child prescribing rates in WA have fallen significantly with 5,666 children on stimulants in 2008.[3]

The 2008 Australian Secondary Students' Alcohol and Drug Survey (ASSAD) data indicated a reduction in 'last month amphetamine abuse' by WA school children 12-17 years old from 10.3 per cent in 2002, to 6.5 per cent in 2005, and 5.1 per cent in 2008.[4] Whitely claims ‘this evidence supports the commonsense proposition that prescribing amphetamines facilitates their abuse’.[5]

Whitely has authored a book 'Speed Up and Sit Still - The Controversies of ADHD Diagnosis and Treatment' and a web resource critical of the marketing of ADHD (http://www.speedupsitstill.com). All authors payments from sales of the book are donated to Drug Free Attention Difficulties Support Inc. (http://www.dfads.org.au). DFADS is a not for profit support group established by Whitely in 2003 in order to support parents wishing to take drug free approaches to helping children with attentional difficulties.

Whitely has no medical training. His opposition to the use of ADHD medications stems from his time working as a high school teacher from 1995 to 2001, when he was concerned at the number of heavily medicated boys in his classroom. Despite internet reports to the contrary, Whitely is not a Scientologist and has no commercial interest in ADHD.[6]

References

  1. ^ "Extract from the Western Australian Parliamentary Handbook". 2007. http://www.parliament.wa.gov.au/web/newwebparl.nsf/iframewebpages/Legislative+Assembly+-+Current+Members. Retrieved 2008-04-10. 
  2. ^ Office of Mental Health, Attentional Problems in Children: Diagnosis and Treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Associated Disorders, November 2002, Government of Western Australia: p21
  3. ^ Department of Health, Western Australian Stimulant Regulatory Scheme 2008 Annual Report, Pharmaceutical Services Branch, Health Protection Group, Department of Health, Western Australia (2009)
  4. ^ P. Griffiths, R. Kalic & A. Gunnell, Australian School Student Survey 2008: Western Australian Results (excluding tobacco), Brief Communication no. 2, Drug and Alcohol Office, Perth, 2009.
  5. ^ Martin Whitely, Speed Up and Sit Still - The Controversies of ADHD Diagnosis and Treatment, University of Western Australia Publishing, 2010, p. 37.
  6. ^ http://www.speedupsitstill.com/about-martin-whitely

External links


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