|  Uncategorized   |  Writing a long-overdue wrong (see what i did there….)

Writing a long-overdue wrong (see what i did there….)

One of my most enjoyable engagements since entering the self-employed world of consultancy almost 4 years ago (yikes) was with the Hepatitis C Trust – working on some stakeholder engagement, strategic planning and communication messaging. Having spent most of my career in the drug treatment sector where organisations constantly (and unnecessarily) tied themselves in knots about how to visibly embrace ‘lived experience’ and the self-disclosure of it (through fear of not being ‘professional’) – walking into an organisation that was so proud of its foundations as a campaigning patients’ rights organisation established by and run by and for those affected by Hep C was as humbling as it was energising.

During that engagement I was privileged to spend time with Rachel the CEO, incredible staff and volunteers and heard so many stories – all united around a core mission to eliminate this treatable condition by 2030 globally.

I also had the opportunity to spend time with Sam who had a dual role – they ran the Helpline and provided secretariat support to the Infected Blood Inquiry which was established in 2017 and delivered its final report yesterday. It was a striking and shocking to me at the time that the helpline was still receiving weekly calls from people being diagnosed for the first time as a result of being given infected blood supplies.

It is as saddening as it is enraging that an infected person dies every 4 days or so as a result if this infection.

So Sam – thanks from me. You hung in there through seven long years, hearing so much heartbreak, anger and devastation.

Lets hope the government actually acts now and pays full compensation quickly.

The precedents are not good obviously – be it Post Office, Grenfell, Hillsborough or Windrush the ‘state’ seems incapable having been forced to apologise for its systemic falings and cover ups to actually move towards a remedy.

Just starting a new engagement – interesting embryonic consortium working with young fathers in the justice system.

Musically – I went to The Great Escape last weekend and saw something like 30 different bands over the three days from all around the world. Highlights included a solo set by Cassandra Jenkyns (who is touring later this year) and some ear splitting calls to action from Big Special and Blackgold. There was a coordinated attempt to boycott the festival this year due to the role of Barclay’s Bank as a sponsor (whilst providing banking services to firms supplying arms to Israel). I have a lot of sympathy – but it seemed both late in the day and also the wrong target to me. Its a music festival for up and coming bands and most people bought their tickets months ago. The premier league season finished at the weekend as well – and as far as I know its still sponsored by Barclays.

Anyway I felt conflicted – but had a great time with various friends.

To assuage my conscience I also donated the equivalent of my ticket price to a Palestinian Aid charity.

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