A 12-year-old Texas boy testified before Congress that he was drugged for four years with multiple anti-psychotic medications while in the state foster system. The boy, identified only as Ke’onte, recalled that the drugs left him “in a stupor” and physically ill.

The child’s ordeal was revealed when a Government Accountability Office report was released pointing to the failure of the federal government to protect foster children. The report stated that foster children were up to 13 times more likely to be prescribed anti-psychotics and anti-depressants than other children.

Ke’onte told legislators that being drugged was “the worst thing anyone could do to foster kids.” He lost his appetite because of the medication and felt so exhausted “I would collapse wherever I was in the house.” The drugs also interfered with his mental abilities: “My foster parents would tell me something, and I wouldn’t be able to process it,” the child told members of a Congressional subcommittee.

The boy was prescribed the medications after being misdiagnosed with ADHD and bipolar syndrome. During his testimony he recalled a history of pharmaceutical abuse at the hands of the state: “I’ve been in the mental hospital three times during foster care, and every time I had to get on more meds or new meds to add to the ones I was already taking.” The child was in the foster care system for four years of his life.

Saga of 12-year-old foster boy reveals state’s psychiatric drug abuse of children, 12/16/11

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