This research project is a 16-month user-led, co-produced exploratory study funded by the NIHR School for Social Care Research and undertaken by a research team at Middlesex University. The project commenced in February 2016 and is due to conclude in June 2017. It is led by Dr Sarah Carr, Associate Professor of Mental Health Research.
The work seeks to address an important gap in research and practice knowledge relating to ‘disability hate crime’, targeted violence and hostility against people with mental health problems and adult safeguarding.
The Care Act 2014 ‘Making Safeguarding Personal’ reforms explicitly state that ‘safeguarding everybody’s business’. This study seeks to understand how adult mental health service user experiences can inform personalising safeguarding and the practice focus on resilience and prevention.
The first research aim is to explore mental health service user perspectives and concepts of abuse relating to targeted violence and hostility on the grounds of their mental health problem, and to examine how mental health service users approach protection and prevention.
The second aim is to begin to explore aspects of help-seeking, resilience, protection and prevention with people with mental health problems to provide a basis for taking forward investigations into how agencies involved in adult safeguarding could potentially address mental health related targeted violence and hostility against people mental health problems
Service user researchers Alison, Christine and Dorothy discuss their perspectives on the project.
This is a user-led and co-produced study conducted with mental health service user and survivor researchers working with researchers from social work and mental health practice backgrounds.
A scoping review of the relevant literature is being undertaken and to investigate what is already known about mental health service user experiences of targeted violence and hostility on the grounds of mental health problems, help-seeking and of adult safeguarding in this context.
A team of service user and survivor researchers will conduct interviews with a diverse sample of 30 self-selecting participants on experiences of mental-health related abuse, help-seeking , protection and prevention.
Implications of the interview findings for practice will be discussed more broadly with mental health and adult safeguarding stakeholders via practitioner and provider stakeholder focus groups. The aim of the exploration is to identify and inform person-centred practice and safeguarding responses to targeted violence and hostility experienced by mental health service users.
Twitter will be used to gather a broad range of responses to the findings via two facilitated @MHChat sessions.
A final ‘sense-making and action-planning’ event will be held with all stakeholders at the end of the project in Summer 2017.
The research is user-led in its design, and utilises a co-productive approach to findings interpretation, implementation and in developing outputs. In terms of applied knowledge, the aim is to promote user-led discussion and awareness of a particular aspect of mental health service user experience among adult safeguarding and mental health stakeholders.