People will listen: A guest post

AF: Shortly before Christmas a reader of this blog contacted me and asked if I’d be interested in hosting a guest post about the day he tried to take his own life. 

On the week when ‘Stranger on a Bridge’ survivor-turned campaigner Jonny Benjamin launches the #ThinkWell initiative to get better mental health teaching in schools, this seems an appropriate time to share the post with you. 

I’ve tried to ensure this post stays within the Samaritans media guidelines, but obvious content notes apply. 

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Medway, male violence and invisibilisation

There were a couple of words missing from Panorama‘s shockingly brutal exposé of violent malpractice within the G4S-run Medway Secure Training Centre. The same words were missing from pretty much all the newspaper and broadcast media reports that have picked up on the story since last Friday.

Towards the beginning of the documentary, the BBC’s undercover reporter explained that the residents of the children’s prison (by any other name) were officially referred to as “trainees,” but his script did not stick to that designation. At various points throughout  the 30 minute film he referred to the victims of violent assault, bullying and sadism as “teenagers”, “inmates”, “youngsters”, “young people” and  – most frequently – “children.” [Read more…]