It's a campaign to raise awareness of terms or words that are often used by professionals, that can unintentionally make a young person who is in care or care experienced feel uncomfortable and stigmatised.
Watch the video below titled 'Introducing the Campaign'.
How did the campaign come about?
During the government briefings at the start of the pandemic the term “vulnerable” was used regularly as an umbrella term to describe children that were able to continue attending school.
This term left one member of our Children in Care council (C2C) frustrated and uncomfortable as they did not see themselves in this way. It was another label that they had to bear that made them stand out as different and raised questions from their friends.
This led to a wider discussion with other care experienced young people around the use of language when professionals are talking to them or referencing children in care and care experienced young people and their discomfort with how some of the terms made them feel.
C2C young people came up with their 5 top offenders and would like your help in to change corporate language and reduce stigma around children and young people in care.
One of the offending words they would like to change is “Contact” which staff use to refer to a child in care going to visit their family. One care experienced young person said…
”It's really weird to me for staff to describe seeing my family, my parents, my mum and my little sisters as “Contact”.
What is the purpose of this campaign?
They would like your help to change the language used with children in care by professionals and to help reduce stigma of care experienced young people amongst your friends.
(Image above says #WatchYourWords. Talking to a young person in care or care experienced - when in doubt: Ask, Listen, Recognise.)
Watch the videos below for more information:
Instead of 'Vulnerable' - Try saying 'May need extra support'.
Instead of 'Placement' - Try saying 'Current home/housing'
Instead of saying 'Contact' - Try saying 'Visiting family'
Instead of saying 'Respite' - Try saying 'Staying over/short break'
Instead of saying 'Pathway Plan' - Try saying 'Future Plan'