Out of sight, out of MIND: How Scientology tried & failed to destroy psychiatry in the UK - 2019-08-03
Fifty years ago this summer, Scientology mounted a lengthy and concentrated campaign to take over Britain's National Association of Mental Health (NAMH). Driven by L. Ron Hubbard's paranoid belief that he and Scientology were being targeted by a supposed global psychiatric conspiracy, Scientologists attempted to infiltrate the NAMH ahead of its annual leadership elections and take over the organisation. It was a vivid demonstration of Hubbard's hatred of psychiatry and his followers' willingness to put his anti-psychiatric agenda into practice.
Seized and leaked Scientology files and the NAMH's own internal files — now accessible at the Wellcome Institute in London — allow both sides of the story to be told in greater detail than ever before. They show that despite the campaign's high profile, it proved not only to be a failure but resulted in the NAMH becoming a much stronger and more effective organisation as it responded to Scientology's aggression. It also had lasting consequences, continuing to this day, for how Scientology approaches its perceived enemies.
Based in Westminster in London, the NAMH was a charity formed in 1946 from three previously separate voluntary mental health organisations. It campaigned for better mental health treatment and provided support to the mentally ill and their carers with the aid of government and private funding.