Who Give’s a Toss About Safety? What About Care Ethics?

Who Give’s a Toss About Safety? What About Care Ethics?

imageThe symbolic language of ‘tosser’ is common in Australian society (https://safetyrisk.net/who-gives-a-toss/ ) is used publicly and in advertising like the use of the word ‘w@nker’ . You can read more on the Australian use of the word ‘w@nker’ here

In Australia, we use the expression ‘who gives a toss’ to express a lack of care.

One of the grand omissions of the AIHS BoK Chapter on Ethics is on ‘Care Ethics’, perhaps one of the most pronounced school of ethics in real professions (https://infed.org/mobi/nel-noddings-the-ethics-of-care-and-education/https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-49250-6_5; https://www.socialworktoday.com/news/eoe_0916.shtml ); https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21372233/ ). Indeed, the AIHS BoK amateurish shlock on Ethics provides no map of the terrain of ethics and makes no mention of the importance of care in safety (https://safetyrisk.net/tackling-ethics-in-risk-a-philosophical-challenge/ ).

Yet, many people enter the industry of safety because they do care! Many people enter Safety with a passion of caring only to be disappointed quickly that safety is not about caring, it’s about counting and telling! If you want to have any semblance of care belted out of you just join the cult of zero (https://safetyrisk.net/the-spirit-of-zero/ ) and you will soon experience the brutalism of not giving a toss about persons (https://safetyrisk.net/the-cult-ure-of-zero/ ).

Care Ethics (https://iep.utm.edu/care-eth/ ) is associated with Feminist Ethics and has been about for over 40 years. Also fascinating that the so-called ‘Women in Safety’ movement also presents no feminist discourse of ‘care ethics’. It is also telling in safety discourse on justice that Care Ethics receives no mention, yet lots of language about ‘ethical responsibility’.

If you are interested in finding out about Care Ethics as an essential to professionalism perhaps read anything by Nel Noddings (http://mehrmohammadi.ir/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/The-Challenge-to-Care-in-School-Nel-Noddings.pdf ). Could you imagine how ineffective learning is when students know that the teacher doesn’t ‘care’? (https://safetyrisk.net/what-theory-of-learning-is-embedded-in-your-investigation-methodology/ ).

When I used to teach Philosophy and Ethics in Education to First Year Education students at University of Canberra we tried to weed out students before HECS payment, those who didn’t really care about children or learning. I would often ask students to tell my why they ‘love’ kids. If you don’t love kids and learning, you shouldn’t be in Education and Learning. The last thing you want in the profession of Education is teachers who don’t ‘give a toss’ about your children or learning. Similarly, safety.

At the heart of Care Ethics is the privileging of relations between persons. We know that learning occurs (not content data exchange) when teachers care and students trust their teacher. When students trust and love their teacher, we know that learning takes place, regardless of curriculum. Content repetition is not learning.

At the heart of ‘Care Ethics’ is a focus on Personhood, Power, Presence, Becoming and Relations – all missing from the AIHS BoK on Ethics. Why? Because when zero is your mantra, brutalism is the outcome and, the last thing an ethic of zero desires is care. The amateurish AIHS BoK on Ethics is your evidence.

What is learned very quickly in safety is that measurement, behaviours, qanta, outcomes and numerical goals are all that matter. That’s the language and discourse of safety, it’s not about care. The amateurish AIHS BoK on Ethics is your evidence.

In any caring relationship both sides must confirm the caring, if it’s not a mutual relationship, it’s not caring. WE also know that caring attracts caring, it is an emotional exchange as evidenced by the ‘still face experiments’ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apzXGEbZht0https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bOR7jId8wYk ). Caring is a social psychological action and when indifference is displayed, social relations break down.

In the deontological masculinist ethic projected by the AIHS BoK there is no discussion of mutuality-care, there is only ‘telling’. It’s simple, ‘check your gut’ and ‘tell’ (https://safetyrisk.net/the-aihs-bok-and-ethics-check-your-gut/ ). When you are made ‘the problem’, you’re on your own baby (https://safetyrisk.net/ethical-responsibility-in-safety-youre-on-your-own-baby/), who gives a toss!

Of course, care is a great motivator. When we care things happen, there is movement-learning. When care is embodied and mutual, we know that learning happens. Indeed, we don’t even know what that learning will be, what will ‘become’ (Delueze https://www.academia.edu/1802346/Deleuze_Education_and_Becoming). How fascinating that the AIHS BoK on Ethics doesn’t even discuss motivation, another foundational omission.

If you wish for people to behave ethically in safety, surely you would want to discuss the nature of motivation and Care Ethics? (https://safetyrisk.net/motivation-and-de-motivation-in-safety/ ) Apparently not. Who gives a toss!

If you want a constructive, positive caring, professional and practical approach to an ethic of risk you can study here: https://cllr.com.au/product/an-ethic-of-risk-workshop-unit-17-elearning/

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