I have been feeling really uncomfortable and become increasingly concerned about the way some local authorities and agencies have been using films described as ‘hard hitting’ to teach children and young people personal safety.
Titles like Chelsea’s Choice, Kaleigh’s Love Story, Sick Party, My Dangerous Lover Boy and Think U Know:Matt, have all been designed to scare children into feeling safe.
I also feel guilty because a project I was fairly recently involved in included training staff from over 100 primary and secondary schools in Protective Behaviours alongside offering one of these productions as part of 'the package'.
I went along to a couple of the performances and was aware of feeling really uncomfortable as it became obvious that Protective Behaviours process and the use of ‘shock tactics’ do not fit. It was also evident that a proportion of students did not feel safe - I do not believe they were prepared for what they were going to witness and/or had a choice about being there.
Having seen this production more than once, I was also concerned about the well-being of the relatively young actors.
I could write so much more about this topic, but would in essence be repeating an awful lot of what Jessica Eaton has recently discovered in consultation with young people who have been made to watch these materials, their parents and professionals made to use these.
Please, if you feel up to it, read the report attached below and choose to join the discussion in order to help children and young people exercise their right to feel safe all the time.