Hartnett is a regular guest speaker and mentor at a range of universities, colleges and other specialised educational establishments throughout the UK, ranging from London’s Royal College of Art, London College of Fashion, Kingston University, Arts University College Epsom, Arts University College Bournemouth, University of Wales and University of Hull to London’s Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) and Tate Britain.
Over the years, Hartnett has headed two Special Educational Needs departments in secondary mainstream schools in Tower Hamlets, London. He has statemented over five hundred young people, successfully gaining provision, urgent support intervention.
Hartnett has also worked with young people with SLD (severe learning difficulties), EBD concerns (emotional and behavioural difficulties) in specialised units, as well as young people with PMLD (profound multiple learning difficulties) and those with complex medical needs, within therapeutic settings.
Hartnett has worked on a voluntary basis to assist young people with alcohol and substance abuse issues, young people with housing needs, Tunisian sex workers and PWAs (people with AIDS).
Activism comes in many forms, from outing the Catholic school he attended as a pupil to local Police, to zaps with OUTRAGE!, to launching a campaign to tackle the issue of sex tourism along coastal areas of Tunisia, where much of Hartnett’s fiction has been developed over three decades in the remote areas of Monastir, Sousse and Hammamet.
Time has been spent consulting with local Tunisian agencies to aid vulnerable / at risk deprived youth, who are invariably poorly-educated, unemployed and subjected to manipulative and exploitative sexual predators.
Hartnett introduced a range of posters to highlight this area of abuse, that created debate and a number of hostile reactions.
"As a writer, photographer and activist, I’m pretty used to knee-jerk reactions from people who appear solely intent upon considering the immediate surface of material. Such jerks strike me as willingly incapable of reasoning beyond a gut reaction, to serve whatever mission they’re upon, whatever agenda is grinding in their skulls."
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