Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Report: The Lived Experience Input Gap

Latest Update: 11/29/22

Issue Brief Developed by Max Taylor

Social Reality Lab

Framing Question

Where are the inroads for lived experience survivor input on resource development and service offerings? a.k.a "The Gap"


• Existing opportunity are seemingly sparse, to the point of being wholly non-existent

• Numerous documented examples of outright hostility / "getting slammed" when a survivor critiques or questions existing offerings

• Populations of concern

        • "The Harmed" (existing services hurt or outright traumatized the user)

        • " The Unhelped" (the service user needs help, often wants helps, and is not being effectively        helped)

• Needs

        • Culture shift to validate and respect "The Gap" existing

        • Capacity (improve conditions of empowerment for Harmed / Unhelped, including inancial, social, etc.)

• Potential First Step Ideas

        • Micro-capacity offerings

Background Reading (work in progress)

Article: The Hard Truth Of When We, Sometimes, Can Do Almost Nothing To Help

Selected Quotes from the Harmed and Unhelped populations

“[There is] a culture of victim shaming and dismissiveness that pervades when I seek help for myself and others.”

“It didn't seem to matter what approach I took or who I spoke to, my efforts to help are repeatedly misinterpreted as trying to destroy the school. Destroy. Not trying to protect and cherish and make better. Even when the school (or others involved) asked for my feedback about the school, that feedback was then rejected and pushed aside. So much emotional labor, for zero result. Often I've been rejected because I am too well-informed, more than most at the school today, and too direct, which leaves people feeling threatened. Rather than listen, they shut down every avenue for discussion. Playing nice didn't work, and I'm not willing to play mean.”

“As members of the population we are serving, we are often under-or-unemployed, multiply disabled, and struggle to maintain attention on advocacy and activism when so much time, energy, attention, and labor needs to be spent on keeping a roof over our heads and food on the table. Many of us also have families, children we are responsible for. The burnout factor is always high, which is why a great many of us dip in and out of active status on the front lines.

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