NAPAC, the National Association of People Abused in Childhood. Since Savile was exposed, it has seemed, in the media, to be a voice for survivors of all the big media scandals. It comments on the impacts. It has even commented on the handling of court cases that hit the news. I had found NAPAC good several times, I had found them to be fitly what they say they are. In telling them of this post I have mournfully quoted back to them a particularly nicely written good response of solidarity they gave in 2012, when the TV scandals first gave me cause to share with them my issues about the balance of authority in adolescent institutions. Is it significant they have changed leadership since then?
The very moment of the Janet Smith report coming out is not the time when you wanted to find out that NAPAC has evolved into the same old sham as everything else in the victims’ lives has been. But in a wearied cynical time, no one will be surprised. NAPAC has gone native on the media elite. It has shown it actually does not want to tell all the broadcast media to stop all cultures of hushing up abuse issues, and to shine light into them. It wants its own institutional existence, bolstered by speaking to media about those hushings up that have already been exposed: but it will actually run from you if you tell it you are a survivor of something that is still under the hushing up culture.
I described previously here the Welsh TV channel S4C showing a culture of determined silence about the adolescent psychiatry bad practices of Harri Pritchard-Jones, a Welsh literary figure also practising that so-called medicine. How it dug in to choose not to add any coverage of those issues to the rosy approving obituaries it gave to a man who had himself belonged to the Welsh media world of that channel. How it left complaint correspondence unanswered as often as possible and had to be chased for even the minimum of procedural reply it could get away with.
Now, if you are a survivor reading and recognising this as more of the same culture of closing up in dirty silence around their own, as has been exposed in the BBC, you want to be spoken for by grassroots voices accountable to you who will call for it to be stopped whenever it arises. You will have no confidence in NAPAC knowing that it behaved the same as S4C itself. NAPAC actually ignored, its support line made no response at all, an email on Jan 7, referring to that post here about S4C and the need to call out S4C for having a hush-up culture of practice. Posting the printed email in to NAPAC on paper a month later, to bypass their support line and ask why its silence, also got silence. Both written methods of sending, totally ignored without a shred even of supportive explanation of their position.
Next necessary step was phoning. To be conscientious it had to be tried and chalked off. Phoning and simply asking for tips on what to do to ensure an enquiry is not ignored. If they are ethically sound, their answer to that should not be conditional on knowing what your enquiry had actually been, they should just have a procedural answer that solves all cases. Their phone line is supposed to be supportive same as their email line. It’s busy though, it’s a struggle to get through – which tells you how real their issue is and how many folks need them not to be a sham.
It was Thursday evening, exactly when the news was full of the Smith report and the BBC’s failings, it was actually then that I succeeded in making the call. After determining to ask what the enquiry had been, and without any apology for the ignorements, the worker took a line that because they can only listen they can’t respond to a case in any way like speaking out that S4C should show a more open responsive culture.
HOW COME, then, NAPAC has a press release archive here napac.org.uk/about-us/press-release-archive/ WHICH RECORDS THEM CALLING FOR ACTIONS ?! by government and investigators? Yet this worker dug in to a line proved a lie by that page, saying that all NAPAC ever does publicly is advertise its support service and nothing else. And he did this repeating in every sentence the word “unfortunately.”
Everyone has experienced many times the word “unfortunately” being the tool of unscrupulous bureaucrats, evasive businesses, and all types of moral betrayer taking calculatedly oppressive decisions. It is an instrument of violation, a device purposed to make it possible to default on fairness, to kick aside and walk over needs groups in society. Already for all of adult life before this latest experience of it, I have held that it is a lesson from abuse that the word “unfortunately”, and all synonyms of it that are or ever will be invented, are banned from existing. Now if I had had a prominent platform to share that..? Instead, you can phone NAPAC and get the word used to you, and about the same item as when sent in writing they ignored.
An aspie phoning NAPAC and struggling with the flow of speech, to be interrupted in mid sentence by the worker saying they won’t be able to answer. Thence continue to say it’s not a thing NAPAC can help with. Then start interrupting you, NOT LETTING YOU FINISH SENTENCES, openly by his anticipation of where they are going, and proceed to insist on ending the call without you having had the chance to complete your cut off sentence. Openly dodging answering anything whose logic will show that yes NAPAC could react to S4C.
THAT IS A SHABBY AND EMOTIONALLY COLD FOBBING OFF. ANYONE WOULD RECOGNISE THE EXPERIENCE. YOU CAN HAVE THIS EXPERIENCE ON AN ABUSE SUPPORT LINE. NO READERS IN NEED CAN HAVE ANY CONFIDENCE IN PHONING THEM FACING THAT POSSIBILITY.
They are perfectly able to post a comment below, committally disowning under blank cheque any circumstances ever that a phone worker ever does this, and telling us what they are going to do to prevent it. Watch whether they do. They must know that anyone operating a phone support line is tied to the ethic of callers having enough confidence to call, that confidence is critical for survivors of far worse abuses than any I was raising and whether they feel hope or suicidal despair in society, and that autistic troubles with conversation and speech flow stressfully affect confidence to use the phone. For the folks affected by these things it is an effort of mind preparation to pick up the phone and launch into the experience. So that exactly what they most vitally need to be sure can’t happen, exactly the worst response you can possibly give them on the phone, actively damaging to confidence, is exactly what this phone worker did. To cut them off in mid sentence, not let them complete a sentence, and prejudge where they are going with it before you have heard it all. To dig in and persist at this, when clearly by it avoiding answering the item you are stopping them saying.
Along with it, of course, watch whether they ignore again or answer, here, on S4C. For a start, they could explain logically, why they should feel not allowed to tell S4C to have an open culture of not hushing these topics up, after they have been perfectly allowed to say the BBC should. If there is a sensible explanation for that, it would have been nice and supportive to give it in response to either written message. So that the survivor they are dealing with actually knows they have taken any notice, as well as why they are deciding as they are. The phone worker would not have shooed me off the line to escape from saying any more if he had thought there was an answer. The entire pattern fits dodging an unanswerable.
That can give nobody any confidence. www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/video-news/video-napac-sir-edward-heaths-name-heard-quite-often-31425646.html – is a TV video clip of head of NAPAC Gabrielle Shaw saying there is a shift away from “embarrassment factor protecting the high and mighty”! IT IS DANGEROUS DESPAIR FOR MANY OF THE FOLKS IN NEED WHO THEY SPEAK ABOUT, TO KNOW THAT THEY CAN EVER CHOOSE TO PROTECT THE “HIGH AND MIGHTY” THEMSELVES, INCLUDING POSTHUMOUSLY. THIS IS WHAT THEY STAND CAUGHT AS DOING UNLESS THEY MAKE A REACTION TO S4C, FOR THE SAKE OF BEING SEEN TO HAVE TO. To choose not to do it contradicts everything they have been saying.
It will not make them say anything about Pritchard-Jones at all. All that would be said would be about S4C, about how they react to any issue of child safety fair play. To whoever knew this had anything to do with Pritchard-Jones, all it would imply is that the practices of a medical team he belonged to, which as a fact of record existed, should be grilled for their deficiencies. There is no ethical uncertainty that this is the same as grilling deficiencies of the hospitals and schools in the BBC scandals. There is no historical uncertainty over stating the fact of cruelty, that he was a successful author, who in his doctor work, took part in destroying a child author’s chance. There is no factual uncertainty that S4C, and all Welsh media who gave him only good obituaries, make child cruelty stand if they determine not to cover the story that Pritchard-Jones, my Savile, could do that.
27 Feb 2016
- 10 DAYS ON FROM POSTING THIS AND COPYING TO NAPAC, NAPAC HAS DONE NOTHING TO CHALLENGE OR ANSWER IT. THEY ARE LETTING THE UNANSWERED FACTS ABOUT THEM SIT PUBLICLY AVAILABLE, TO ALL WHO MIGHT THINK OF USING NAPAC’S SERVICES OR NEED TO FEEL THEY CAN, AND WHO AFTER READING THIS HAVE NO CONFIDENCE TO PHONE NAPAC KNOWING THEY MAY GET FURTHER BRUISED BY IT..
THIS IS NOW WHERE MEDIA ACCOUNTABILITY AND RELATED SURVIVOR SUPPORT ARE AT, AFTER THE SMITH REPORT. IT MUST BE TOLD. THE PUBLICLY FUNDED CHARITY CLAIMING TO SPEAK FOR SURVIVORS IS IGNORING THE TV SCANDALS THAT HAVE NOT YET MADE A NEWS MEDIA IMPACT DOING NOTHING TO MAKE THEM MAKE AN IMPACT, LETTING THEM STAY HIDDEN. BY CHOICE THEY ARE LETTING SOME OF TV’S ROTTEN CULTURE STAY INTACT, WITH NO INVESTIGATIVE LIGHT SHONE INTO IT AROUND ANOTHER CULTURAL FIGURE WHO ENJOYED SUCCESS WITH AN UNHEARD AND LONG GAGGED CHILD VICTIM, IN THAT WAY ANOTHER SAVILE, AND SELECTIVELY TURNING THEIR BACK ON SURVIVORS EVEN WITH THE ARROGANT ENOUGH HUBRIS TO SELECTIVELY NOT ANSWER US. IT HAS NO ANSWER TO THIS. THE SHAM OF A SURVIVORS’ ASSOCIATION IS ACTING AS PART OF THE PROBLEM ITSELF, PART OF THE CORRUPTED TV CULTURE, COSIED UP TO ELITES. IT HAS BEEN CORRUPTED BY THEM. INSTEAD OF PART OF THE SOLUTION, IT HAS BECOME PART OF THE SAVILE PROBLEM ITSELF. THIS MUST BE GRIMLY SHARED AND TOLD, BY THE SURVIVOR SCENE AND THE TV SCANDALS TRUTH SCENE, AS PART OF THE POST-SAVILE STORY.
- As late as Jun 15, a reply came from NAPAC by email. Yes, even after reading the above, it contained the word unfortunately”. Essentially all it said was: over 5 million adult survivors in UK, don’t have the resources to take up individual concerns about media coverage. Many requests from media to comment on adult survivor issues. Do their best to reflect survivors’ range of views. Link to their media guidelines on reporting ch abuse. Understand the constraints they are under.
What did this answer not answer? – Anything to do with their phone helpline’s standards. Anything on the principle of telling all the broadcast media to stop all cultures of hushing up abuse issues, and to shine light into them.
It’s not goood enough to write “we simply don’t have the resources to take up individual concerns about media coverage”. It’s implausible that there is that big a quantity of individual concerns about hidden media figures like Pritchard-Jones. If there are, NAPAC should be saying a lot about the fact. It’s not. Who have you seen it protect, by this line? Obviously the “high and mighty”.