The High Ground, Norfolk & Sophie’s Genius
What a thoroughly shit week.
I’m still trying to deal with the fall out from the “Mencap Interview”. I still don’t really understand the feelings that it has aroused in people. Yesterday, someone tweeted, rather vindictively: “There are two ways of campaigning. The right way and the Justice for LB way”. The same person was equally dismissive of 7 Days of Action. I don’t understand what prompts that degree of venom. I almost admire that double whammy of a tactic of being extremely wounded and hurt whilst adopting the moral high ground at the same time. It’s phenomenal because its got all bases covered.
Then since Wednesday, I’ve been trying to deal with Steven’s annual pre-holiday anxiety. Several meltdowns that social stories, picture charts don’t even touch. I’m actually hoarse from the number of times I’ve had to reassure and answer the following questions:
“Dad – put batteries in the CD player for singing on the minbus”.
“Dad – put swimming trunks in the big suitcase”.
“Dad – get blue Pringles from Ranjit’s sweet shop & put them in the bag”.
“Dad – put Mr Bean in America in Steven Neary’s backpack”.
On a loop. Several times an hour. And it will all evaporate once we get into the minibus on Monday morning.
And then after a week long diet of shit sandwiches, yesterday along came Sophie Dimitriadis to make everything alright with the world again. Sophie contacted the 7 Days of Action posse a few weeks back and asked to make a film about the dudes featured in the campaign and to explore the wider issue of life in an ATU. She has worked like a trooper over the past month putting the final film together but it was well worth it (in my opinion).
Two lines in particular leap out to me that illustrates her genius and gets to the core of what the ATU scandal is all about.
Firstly, Sophie interviewed Norman Lamb, who came out with the killer summary, “Somehow the State manages to resist the attraction of providing better care at a cheaper cost”.
Spot on Mr Lamb. Baffling. The solution, so near and yet so far.
Then came the interview with Deb Evans, the mother of Eden who featured on Day One of 7 Days of Action. Deb is reflecting on what life might be like when Eden comes home after seven years away: “It would be nice if he popped round for a cup of tea. That would make Eden very happy”.
And Deb smiled. A smile at the simplicity and normality of a cup of tea with her son.
Here is the film. Pour yourself a Double Diamond, perhaps prepare a small cake on a side plate. Definitely have some tissues handy.
Thank you Sophie and your brilliant team.
From → Social Care