Hello Mr Clarke, I’m writing to you in the aftermath of the psycho Halloween outfit racket.
I’m currently walking around the edge of the UK to highlight the experiences of people with mental health problems.
I’m doing it with no money, relying purely on the kindness of the people of our fair island to help me on my way.
I am a man with a severe and enduring mental health problem who was disabled out of my career as a social worker after 20 years because of my mental malady.
I’ve had reasonable media coverage including the Scottish Sun and BBC radio. I’ll put my links at the end of the email for your reference.
The reason I’m writing is that I’m concerned about the media outrage regarding your Halloween psycho outfits.
It’s my aim to get people to talk about mental health – by displaying such outrage, the various individuals and organisations who claim to be voicing the concerns of people with mental health problems, have prevented any chance of open dialogue.
They have polarised the situation into the ‘good’ – we poor defenceless folk with mental health problems and the ‘bad’ you evil corporate monsters.
Obviously the debate is far more complex.
The charity ‘Rethink’ say ‘It’s time to talk’ – I don’t see a lot of talking taking place here.
As a social worker and a wandering loon I want to help change attitudes. I’m not particularly interested in supposedly negative language or, in this case, having a bit of a hoot.
I see this as an opportunity to talk – to promote engagement in this potential minefield.
I would be delighted if I could come and talk with you to share some of the expertise I’ve collected on my way round.
So far I’ve walked around Scotland and a number of the islands. I’ve invaded England as far as Liverpool.
Mental health notwithstanding, I’m pretty flexible and would be happy to fit in with your schedule.
Many thanks for taking the time to read this
Chris McCullough Young
Film/ sound/ radio recordings