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Friday 15 September 2017

Spoken Word film speaks volumes about attitudes to adults at risk of abuse

A powerful short film, produced through Cheshire East Council, which highlights the concerns faced by ‘people at risk’, has been praised by national experts.

Spoken Word is a poignant ‘talking heads’ video in which several people, who access services talk about their experiences of adult abuse, prejudices and patronising attitudes.

They describe the distress and anxiety this can cause them.

Dr Adi Cooper, a leading authority on adult safeguarding, is the latest expert to praise the film, which was produced by service users of the Cheshire East Safeguarding Adults Board.

She has just published her latest book – co-edited with Emily White – and has included text from the film.  Dr Cooper said: “The ‘Spoken Word’ video communicates powerfully some straightforward messages about how important it is to hear what is being said by people who not always listened to, about their lives and what is important to them.

“We have used their words, at the start of our new book, about safeguarding adults to make it really clear to all the readers that talking with – and listening to – people comes first in all adult safeguarding work.”

The Spoken Word is based on a poem produced by adults at risk who came together in workshops to discuss the personal experiences they had encountered in everyday life.

They then delivered their powerful and moving messages directly to camera at the Axis Arts Centre, part of Manchester Metropolitan University’s Crewe Campus.

Since going public, the film has received great acclaim from social and health care professionals, mental health and adult abuse experts around the country.

Councillor Janet Clowes, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for adult integration, said: “I am very pleased that this film has been so well received by other agencies around the country and that it will be used in the training programmes that are so vital to ensuring that staff working with vulnerable adults have all the professional skills required to care for their service users.

“Rarely do we get to hear the true experiences and thoughts of vulnerable adults from their own lips and this short film sends out a very powerful message to us all that they are equal members of society and deserve respect, kindness and care like everyone else.”

The lasting message from the film is clear, powerful and poignant – Speak Up, Speak Out, Stop Adult Abuse!

Adults at risk that have viewed the film have also commented on how it has encouraged them to report their concerns to their adult social care service.

The film can be viewed on the Cheshire East Safeguarding Adults Board website at:

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