I need your help please. I’d like to ponder the best way for a scary topic (child sexual abuse prevention) to be heard and addressed by the average parent on the average street.
In, Switching off road safety, Gary Hughes over at The Australian asks, “Are those graphic road safety advertisements showing death and horrific injuries losing their impact? Are we “switching off” and not taking notice any longer?”
These questions are not new. As a first year psychology undergraduate I had to research these types of empowerment verses fear questions. The research then (20 years ago) was overwhelmingly supportive of fear creating a barrier to hearing and objectively responding to an issue (smoking, violence on T.V, child sexual abuse, water safety, etc.).
My experience supports that fear prevents parents hearing messages about child protection, particularly fear from sexual assault.
Think of someone you know. How can child protection market itself in the most positive light to them? How can we encourage parents to continue the good things they are doing and increase their awareness and proactive protection against child sexual abuse?
I am interested to hear your comments. While I am a parent of four, I am not the best person to make comment on these questions because I have no fear around the topic. Child sexual abuse, incest, rape and pedophilia ends dinner party conversation…I know because it has happened to my dinner parties on a number of accessions. A slow learner or a dogmatic passionate I may be but this is my profession, my area of expertise and my mission. I just really hate getting stuck with the washing up all the time!!
In the largest on-line child protection conversation in the world, Imaginif aims to reach maximum numbers of global parents and to assist them in keeping their kids safe. The last thing our children need is for parents to “switch off” because of fear based ramming.
What works for you and what would work for a friend?