Archive for the ‘Meeting’ Category

Congress; Cash; Workhouse

October 30, 2017


Photo: Sean Crudden

The Autumn Interim Meeting of IMPERO took place in the meeting room of Our Lady of The Wayside Church, Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co. Louth, Ireland, starting at 14:00 on Saturday 28 October 2017.

Present: Edward S. Crudden, treasurer; Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD, chairperson; Sean Crudden, secretary

Apologies: Mrs. Anne M. Muldowney, vice-chairperson; Francis McCormack, mentor; Kevin McGeough, founder member; Leonard Hatrick, president

Sean read out the minutes of the previous interim meeting held on 25 February 2017 from his mobile phone.

Sean said that Lina Ciuksiene, Olga Kalina, Peter Lehmann, all of them members of ENUSP, had been invited to present at the recent Congress of WPA (World Psychiatric Association) held in Berlin.  Mary Maddock of Mind Freedom Ireland had also made a presentation at the congress.  Thanks are due to Maths Jesperson of ENUSP for his reports on the congress published on Facebook.  Sean read some of the correspondence between himself and Olga Kalina, chairperson of ENUSP, which arose when she was consulting members of ENUSP in the preparatory stages for the congress.  There is considerable kudos involved and genuine interest.  But the view was expressed at our meeting that, perhaps, we are flogging a dead horse.

The subject of money was discussed in some detail.  Arrangements were made to withdraw sufficient cash from IMPERO’s account in Jenkinstown Post Office to discharge all our debts.  When that is done there will be very little left.  Teddy and the Archbishop undertook to make enquiries with a view of sourcing sufficient funds to keep the wheels turning.

The subject of suicide was discussed.  IMPERO has no expertise in this area and we have no answers to the problem.  Perhaps somehow help for distressed people could be made available free of the stigma of mental health care? 

The meeting noted that the 18th annual winter workshop organised by Cooley Environmental and Health Group; which takes place on 27 January 2018 in The Strand, Omeath; will engage with the theme, “Mental Health Care in Louth 1918 – 2018 and Beyond.”  There was a short discussion of where people who died in Ardee Workhouse were buried.  Also, where patients who died in Ardee Mental Hospital were buried.

The meeting wished Leonard Hatrick a speedy recovery from recent surgery. 


Archbishop Hynes leaving the church after the interim meeting had finished

Photo: Seán Crudden


Annual Assembly of IMPERO 2017

June 19, 2017

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Geraldine and Liam Kieran pictured outside where they went to drink their coffee after the assembly had concluded formal business inside The Strand, Omeath, Co. Louth.

Photo: Sean Crudden

The assembly kicked off when 9 people sat down for a meal of chicken curry, rice, chips; cheesecake and banana ice-cream; tea or coffee.  At 14:15 on Saturday 17 June 2017 the day on which some beautiful summer weather began in Ireland.  The meal featured a toast to the United Nations drunk in Kilbeggan, a smooth Irish whiskey produced in Cooley Distillery nearby.  The toast was proposed by Anne Muldowney vice-chairperson of IMPERO.

Attendance: Anne Muldowney, vice-chairperson; Sean Crudden, secretary; Kevin McGeough, founder member; Edward S. Crudden, treasurer; Paul Jennings; Leonard Hatrick, president; Margaret Hatrick; Liam Kieran; Geraldine Kieran; Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD, chairperson.

The minutes of the previous annual assembly were read out by the secretary from his mobile phone.  They were adopted unanimously on the proposal of The Archbishop seconded by Teddy.

The secretary reported on the year’s work.  The minutes of the previous Annual Assembly were rather pessimistic.  But perhaps the darkness is starting to lighten a little now?

The treasurer’s report showed the finanaces to be in a healthy state with basically no change since last year.  IMPERO’s account in Jenkinstown PO shows a balance of slightly over €370.

There was a lot of discussion at the meeting and, earlier, at the dinner table about schools and education.  And it was pointed out that there may be a link between the causes and cures for mental illness.  Adverting to the election of a new Taoiseach, Leo Varadhkar, Margaret said that the new government  should waken up.

The outgoing officers were returned unopposed.  Francis McCormack was reaffirmed in absentia as Mentor.  “He was a big help to me during the year,” Sean said.

The Autumn interim meetng was fixed for 28 October 2017 starting at 14:00 in Our Lady of The Wayside Church, Jenkinstown.  The Spring interim meeting was fixed for Saturday 24 February 2018 at 14:00 in OLOTW.  The annual assembly was fixed for Bloomsday 2018 in The Strand, starting with a meal at 14:00.

Sean thanked OLOTW; Tesco Extra, Dundalk; The Strand: for the use of their facilities during the past year.

The meeting concluded at 16:25


Sean Crudden snapped by the roadside past The Long Woman’s Grave on his way home to Jenkinstown from Omeath after the general assembly had concluded

Photo: Anne Muldowney

Spirit; forsaking; vestry; commissioner

October 31, 2016


The Autumn interim meeting of IMPERO took place in the meeting room of Our Lady of The Wayside Church, Jenkinstown, starting at 15:00 on Saturday 29 October 2016.

Present: Leonard Hatrick, president; Margaret Hatrick; Kevin McGeough; Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD, chairperson; Sean Crudden, secretary.

An apology was received from Anne Muldowney.

Those present recited a prayer from a small script, for the recovery of Fr. Pádraig Murphy, parish priest of Lordship and Ballymascanlon, who has suffered a serious illness and for healing for all.  Fr. Murphy is the pastor of Our Lady of The Wayside Church.

The Archbishop recited a short extempore prayer for the success of the meeting through the guidance of the spirit in the hope that something interesting gets done.

The chairperson read the minutes of the General Assembly held in June.

The secretary read the minutes of the Spring interim meeting held in February, the last ordinary meeting.  These minutes were unanimously adopted on the proposal of the president seconded by the chairperson.

The recently opened new facility in The Lourdes was discussed at some length.  No one fully understood the strategy of the HSE in forsaking Ardee Mental Hospital which is still a serviceable building on a lovely site.  Some misgivings were expressed about the possible absence of a community aspect within the new facility.  Others thought patients might appreciate the privacy afforded by en-suite single rooms. 

Leonard will attend on behalf of IMPERO the ENUSP seminar in Berlin on 13, 14, 15 November 2016.  The Archbishop led the meeting in an extempore prayer for Leonard that he will have the strength to accomplish the journey and that he will make friends and enjoy himself.

Leonard is to investigate with his vestry the possibility of holding the Spring interim meeting in February in St. Mary’s Church of Ireland, Ardee.

The meeting complimented Leonard who has recently been appointed commissioner for oaths in The High Court.

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Disinvitation: Dominate: Smoking Ban: Fear

February 21, 2016

The Spring interim meeting of IMPERO took place in Brian Muldoon’s Bar, Ardee, Co. Louth, Ireland; on Saturday 20 February 2016 starting at 15:00.

Present were: Anne Muldowney, vice-chairperson; Seán Crudden, secretary; Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD, chairperson; Leonard Hatrick PC, president; Francis McCormack; Domini Turley.

The minutes of the previous meeting were read aloud by Leonard Hatrick.  The minutes were adopted unanimously on the proposal of Leonard seconded by the Archbishop.

The article The Danish Girl written by Seán was read aloud by Anne Muldowney.  Anne received compliments on the way she read the article.  There was some discussion on the meaning of the word “ersatz.”

Seán read aloud a series of e-mails, one from Olga Kalina chirperson of ENUSP, dealing with BPE’s proposal to disinvite the WPA congress in Berlin slated for 2017.  IMPERO seems happy to back the proposal of the German organisation BPE.  However there is no intention of dictating to ENUSP what its attitude should be.

There was some discussion about the power of psychiatry.  It was felt that it dominates the legal profession and human rights organisations.  Fear is used to control people the way it used to be used in the Catholic Church and in the police.  Anne Muldowney asserted, “the one thing patients should not have is fear.”

IMPERO has closed its account in Ulster Bank and opened instead a post office account in Jenkinstown PO.  To withdraw cash from the account two signatures are required.  Sean Crudden.  +M.D. Hynes.  There is €310 in the account.

Seán Crudden read aloud his journal for 13, 14, 15 December 2015 the days he attended the ENUSP empowerment seminar organised by MHE in Brussels.  “Interesting,” Leonard Hatrick commented.

The date 11 June 2016 was chosen for this year’s General Assembly of IMPERO.  Leonard will try to arrange a venue in Ardee subject to obtaining the correct indemnity insurance.

Leonard raised the practical problem of patients in Ardee Mental Hospital being forced by the smoking ban to go out to the gates of the hospital on the Kells road to smoke.

IMPERO General Assembly, 2015

June 15, 2015


Arhbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD, Leonard Hatrick PC, Mark Doran, Edward S Crudden: pictured in the community facility, Tesco Extra, after the General Assembly

Photo: Sean Crudden

The General Assembly of IMPERO for 2015 took place in the community facility, Tesco Extra, Dundalk, starting at 14:00 on Saturday 13 June 2015.


  1. Minutes of General Assembly 2014
  2. Matters Arising
  3. Correspondence with Olga Kalina, chairperson of ENUSP
  4. Financial Report
  5. Election of officers and selection of mentor for the coming year
  6. Strategy
  7. Any other business

Present: Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes, Leonard Hatrick, Mark Doran, Sean Crudden, Edward S Crudden

Apologies: Michael O’Hanlon, Peter Murphy, Anne Muldowney, Kevin McGeough, Paul Smyth

Someone said that the EC is dominated by international drug companies.  Another remarked that the structure of the country affects mental health e.g. austerity.  Everyone agreed that there is no evidence that the European Union is doing anything to advance in Ireland the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities.

IMPERO reserve business account is in credit to the tune of €307.27.

It was felt that residential facilities like Ardee Mental Hospital should be kept open because many mental patients are operating at reduced capacity due to the effects of medication and increasing age and should not be expected to fend for themselves.

The following officers were elected unanimously.  President; Leonard Hatrick PC: Chairperson; Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD: Vice-chairperson; Anne M. Muldowney: Secretary; Sean Crudden B.Sc., H dip in Ed: Treasurer; Kevin McGeough BBS: Auditor; Edward S. Crudden B Comm.

Paul Smyth was selected as mentor of IMPERO for the coming year.

The Autumn interim meeting was fixed for Saturday 24 October 2015 starting at 14:00 in Brian Muldoon’s Restaurant, Ardee.  The Spring interim meeting will be held in the community facility, Tesco Extra, Dundalk, starting at 14:00 on Saturday 20 February 2016.

Derek Pepper’s radio show on mental health on Dundalk FM 100 was mentioned.  Mark said there was a necessity to reduce suicide rates.  Sean promised to keep members up-to-date on the progress of ARI (Advancing Recovery in Ireland).

The meeting was unanimous in congratulating Leonard on his recent appointment as a Peace Commissioner.


Sean Crudden, secretary and founder of IMPERO, pictured after the meeting.

Photo: Leonard Hatrick

General Assembly 2014

June 16, 2014


Photo: Sean Crudden

Anne Muldowney trying to decide who to snap next

The annual assembly of IMPERO for 2014 took place in The Old Schoolhouse, Bellurgan, Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co. Louth, Ireland, starting promptly at 14:00 on Saturday 14 June 2014.

Present: Anne Muldowney, chairperson; Seán Crudden, secretary; Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes, mentor; Kevin McGeough, joint-treasurer; Peter Murphy.

Apologies were received from Leonard Hatrick and Joan Hardy, joint-treasurer.

The meeting reminisced about the two deceased members of the committee of IMPERO: Ita Daly, president; Michael Farrelly, vice-chairperson.  The archbishop concluded the discussion with a short extempore prayer, “May God give them rest.  We hope they are with The Lord.”

The chairperson read aloud the minutes of General Assembly 2013 which were adopted unanimously on the proposal of the archbishop seconded by Peter Murphy.

The minutes referred to initiatives in 2013 on mental health by Obama and by The Vatican.  The secretary admitted that he had no up-to-date information on where these initiatives had led.

The following team of officers for the coming year was approved unanimously.  Leonard Hatrick, president; Mrs. Anne M Muldowney, chairperson; Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes, vice-chairperson; Seán Crudden, secretary: Kevin McGeough, treasurer; Peter Murphy, mentor.  The role of mentor was discussed and the secretary praised the ground-breaking work of Joan Hardy who filled the role extremely competently for a number of years in the past.

The chairperson thought that the main role of the psychiatrist was to motivate their patients.  “Do one deed every day to make someone else happy,” was her recipe.

The chairperson read aloud Mental Health Europe’s “Bucharest Manifesto.”  The secretary sounded a caveat about consulting mental patients about the construction of The American Psychiatric Association’s 5th edition of their Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM 5) and about the forthcoming revision of The International Classification of Diseases (ICD 10).  “Personally I would not like to have anything to do with the composition of these manuals because I am only too well aware of the downstream effects of these manuals.”

Speaking on the Bill dealing with Mental Capacity and Assisted Decision Making currently on its way through The Oireachtas Seán Crudden said, “It is impenetrable, arcane, unserviceable, impractical.”

The meeting was keen to continue relations with the European Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry (ENUSP).  It also took a favourable view of efforts made in recent time in the field of adult education.  Appreciation was expressed for the work of Sinéad Fearon of Louth Meath Education and Training Board (LMETB) who has given IMPERO great assistance in that regard during the past year.

Treasurer Kevin McGeough reported that there is €307 on deposit in the IMPERO reserve business account in Ulster Bank, 100 Clanbrassil Street Dundalk.  The secretary is owed a small amount due to out-of-pocket expenses.  Kevin agreed to draw up a statement of account for the year ending 31 December 2014.

Winter Interim Meeting, 14:00 Saturday 15 November 2014, Our Lady of The Wayside Church, Jenkinstown: Spring Interim Meeting, 14:00 Saturday 21 February 2015, OLOTW: General Assembly, 14:00 Saturday 13 June 2015, The Old Schoolhouse, Bellurgan.

The meeting lasted about an hour.  Those attending took part in a little photography at the end.


Photo: Seán Crudden

Outgoing mentor, Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD, seated, with incoming mentor, Peter Murphy.


Photo: Anne Muldowney

Seán Crudden and Archbishop Hynes with Lordship Credit Union in the background

Spring Interim Meeting, Saturday 22 February 2014

February 24, 2014


Tree planting going on in the grounds of Our Lady of The Wayside Church, Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co. Louth, Ireland, while the IMPERO meeting took place in the meeting room inside the church.

Photo: Seán Crudden

The meeting commenced at 14:00 on Saturday 22 February 2014. 

Present: Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMA PhD, mentor; Michael O’Hanlon; Seán Crudden, secretary; Edward S. Crudden; Michael Farrelly, vice-chairperson.

Apologies: Joan Hardy, joint-treasurer; Kevin McGeough, joint-treasurer; Anne Muldowney, chairperson; Paul Smyth; Kevin Hynes.

Michael Farrelly took the chair, welcomed those in attendance and opened the meeting by reciting a Hail Mary.

The minutes of the Autumn Interim Meeting were read by the secretary and were adopted unanimously on the proposal of the archbishop seconded by Michael O’Hanlon.

The archbishop complained that it is difficult to raise issues affecting mental patients with the North Louth Joint Policing Committee of which he is a member nominated by IMPERO.  “It’s ritualistic,” he commented, “You can’t get your point across.”  He also expressed his frustration with the proceedings of County Louth Community and Voluntary Forum.

The secretary informed the meeting that a class on creative writing has been provided by Louth and Meath Education and Training Board for IMPERO.  The series of 5 weekly classes will begin on Tuesday 25 February 2014 at 19:00 in The Old Schoolhouse, Bellurgan.  The tutor is Linda Newe.  The classes will be held subject to a minimum number of enrolments and attendance. 

The secretary read his article, “Assisted Decision Making,” published on 3 December 2013 on  There was some lively discussion culminating in the question, “What are the rights of mentally ill people?”

The application for ECOSOC status with the UN is closed, the meeting decided.

The secretary reported on the ENUSP seminar held in Hotel Ibis Gara de Nord, Bucharest, 8 – 10 December 2013.  The main themes dwelt upon by the seminar were; communications, General Assembly, fund raising.  Seán said he stayed on in Bucharest until 12 December to look around.  He had been impressed by Ceausescu’s mighty building and he recommended Romania as a holiday destination.  “I enjoyed the trip,” Seán said.

The chairperson of the meeting, Michael Farrelly, asserted that patients who take a stand are worse off than ever.  He urged cooperation.  “You must love yourself,” he concluded.

The next meeting of IMPERO is the General Assembly which will take place DV in The Old Schoolhouse, Bellurgan, on Saturday 14 June 2014, starting at 14:00


Edward S. Crudden pictured at the window of the meeting room in Our Lady of The Wayside Church immediately before the meeting began.

Photo: Seán Crudden

Autumn Interim Meeting; Saturday 26 October 2013

October 27, 2013


Sean Crudden, secretary, relaxing before the IMPERO meeting which was held in The Old Schoolhouse, Bellurgan, Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co. Louth, Republic of Ireland, starting at 14.00 on Saturday, 26 October 2013.

Photo: Anne Muldowney


Anne M. Muldowney relaxes with a little 7-up after driving from Stamullen for Saturday’s meeting.

Photo: Seán Crudden

The secretary recited a short prayer to open the meeting; Veni Sancte Spiritus.

Present: Mrs. Anne Marie Muldowney, chairperson: Seán Crudden, secretary: Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD, mentor: Michael O’Hanlon.

Apologies: Fr. Paddy Larkin, Leonard Hatrick, Edward Stephen Crudden, Peter Murphy, Kevin McGeough, Michael Farrelly.

The secretary was directed to write to Andrei Abramov, Chief, NGO Branch, United Nations; in response to his letter of 8 April 2013 indicating that IMPERO’s application for ECOSOC consultative status is closed.  The meeting decided unanimously that there was no point in pursuing the application further now and that the matter should be allowed to rest.

The secretary recommended the report “Breaking Down the Silos” summarising the UN consultation “World We Want 2015” dealing with economic development.

Funds are low.

The old Church of Ireland school, Bush, was suggested as a possible venue for future meetings, by Michael O’Hanlon.

It was decided to consult Brian Larkin, Greenore, on fund-raising possibilities.

The secretary proposed to write an article on about assisted decision making.  It was suggested he consult with Micheal O’Hanlon, a former school principal and school guidance teacher.  It was felt that assisted decision making was something difficult to legislate.  Is it possible to regulate practice in this area?  The secretary’s proposal was approved.

The meeting approved a proposal from Sinéad Fearon to provide training in writing and dramatic voice production for members of IMPERO.  Sinéad is director of community education for Louth/Meath Education and Training Board.

The chairperson reiterated that patients were happier if they were recognised as people and treated as people.

The Archbishop suggested the following theme for the ENUSP seminar slated for Bucharest in December; How are cuts and austerity affecting mental health?

Reporting on the North Louth policing committee of which he is a member representing IMPERO the Archbishop pointed to intimidation and unreported crime.  He agreed to the secretary’s request to seek formal discussion in the committee of police relations with mental patients.

The date of the Spring interim meeting was fixed for Saturday 22 February 2014 at 14.00 in The Old Schoolhouse, Bellurgan.

Annual Assembly 2013: The Old School House, Bellurgan

June 17, 2013

The annual assembly of IMPERO took place in The Old School House, Bellurgan, Jenkinstown, Dundalk, on Saturday 15 June 2013 starting promptly at 14.00.

Present: Anne M. Muldowney, chairperson; Seán Crudden, secretary; Kevin McGeough, joint-treasurer; Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes OMD PhD, joint treasurer; Fr. Paddy Larkin, retired parish priest of Lordship and Ballymascanlon; Peter Murphy; Michael O’Hanlon, retired principal of Bush Post-Primary School.

Apologies: Michael Farrelly, vice-chairperson; Kevin Hynes; Joan Hardy, mentor.

The minutes of the previous annual assembly held on 16 June 2012 were read by the secretary and adopted unanimously on the proposal of the Archbishop seconded by Kevin McGeough.

The secretary read aloud his journal for 22 May 2013 and also for 23 May 2013 the day the EPF (European Patients’ Forum) plenary took place in The Royal Marine Hotel, Dún Laoghaire.  The conference addressed the issue of “active patients’ involvement in health care,” and “self-management.”

The meeting heard that cash in the Ulster Bank, Dundalk, in IMPERO’s account, had dwindled to less than 50 euro.  The 3 joint treasurers had not met in the past year.  “We do not need money,” someone remarked.

It was agreed without objection that the following team of officers would operate for the coming year.  President; Ita Daly: chairperson, Anne M. Muldowney: vice-chairperson, Michael Farrelly; secretary, Seán Crudden; joint treasurer, Joan Hardy; joint treasurer, Kevin McGeough.

Other members who will serve on the central committee are as follows: Peter Murphy, Eric Cuthbert, Dermot Mooney, Edward S. Crudden.

Archbishop Michael Desmond Hynes was appointed mentor for the coming year with unanimous approval.

The meeting was lively throughout and there were many pertinent questions asked.  Topics arising included, UNCRPD (United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities), the purpose and role of IMPERO; capacity legislation; definition of mental illness; guidance; young people; peer support; the broken leg theory of mental illness i.e. help, recovery and no stigma.  The secretary mentioned the presidential commission getting under way in the US and President Obama’s interest in the whole question of “mental health.”  Seán also pointed out that the Vatican is looking into the reasons why so many mind-altering drugs are being prescribed to young people.

The next interim meeting of IMPERO was fixed for Saturday 26 October 2013 starting at 14.00 in the meeting room of Our Lady of The Wayside Church, Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co Louth.

The next annual assembly was fixed for Saturday 14 June 2014 starting at 14.00 in The Old School, Bellurgan.

The secretary remarked that thanks were due Tommie McGuinness, a very obliging man, for the use of The Old School House; a building renovated, owned and operated by the local community.

Fr. Larkin recited the Lord’s Prayer to open the meeting.  The archbishop spoke a short extempore prayer at the end.

Seán and Anne took a few informal photos when the meeting ended.


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Seán Meets Erik

March 14, 2013

On the weekend of Sunday 24 February 2013 Erik Olsen, chairperson of ENUSP (European Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry), attended a conference in The Gibson Hotel, Dublin.  The conference was a plenary organised by EDF (European Disability Forum).  Seán Crudden, secretary, IMPERO, visited Erik on Sunday afternoon where Erik was staying in Jury’s Inn, Parnell Street.  The two individuals engaged in a hearty chin-wag for an hour or two before Erik caught his plane home.


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