This series of short films shows an extended conversation between Phoebe Caldwell (DSc, Expert Responsive Communication Practitioner who has worked with autistic people for 45 years) and Janet Gurney (BA, PGCT, Director of Training for Us in a Bus, a service based in Surrey that supports adults and children with profound and multiple learning difficulties and autism).
- Using film (recording an interaction then playing it back later on to “unpack” or interpret what took place) is invaluable to see what we are missing, since it is not always possible to pick up all the subtle points of body language at the time. It can also help to pick up on any triggers to distressed behaviour.
- Filming people aged 18 and over requires the person’s consent which, for many of the people we support, may not possible as they may lack capacity to consent. In order to obtain consent to film a person aged 18 or over who lacks capacity, the Mental Capacity Act 2005 requires that a Best Interests meeting takes place to decide whether or not filming the person is in their best interests.
- For individuals under 18, their parents can give consent for them to be filmed.
- Consistency: the use of film can help to show other people how to use body language to communicate, but remember, each person’s approach will be slightly different since each of us will be developing our own personal relationship with the person.