Guidelines for Use of Photographs at Sporting Events

There have been concerns about the risks posed directly and indirectly to children and young people through the use of photographs on sports websites. Photographs can be used as a means of identifying individuals when they are accompanied with personal information "this is X who likes music": this information can make an individual vulnerable to another person who may wish to start to "groom" that child for abuse. Secondly the content of the photo can be used or adapted for inappropriate use, and there is evidence of this adapted material finding its way onto child pornography sites.

Sporting organisations and clubs need to develop a policy in relation to the use of images of athletes on their website, or on public display. The sport will need to make decisions about the type of images they consider suitable and that appropriately represent the sport. They will want to ensure that parents support their policy. When assessing the potential risks in the use of images of athletes, the most important factor is the potential of inappropriate use of images of young people.

If sporting organisations are aware of the potential risks and take appropriate steps the potential for misuse can be reduced.

The CPSU would advise sporting bodies to

General Policy statement

Where children and/or vulnerable adults are involved

Specimen forms for consent by parents and carers and individuals can be found on the Sample Forms page. Also on that page is a specimen form for those wishing to take photographs and it is s trongly advised that all parents, carers and family attending events where other children and vulnerable adults are involved are urged to register.

Photographic images (cameras or video media or mobile phones)

Care should also be taken to monitor the use of mobile phones with a photo capability to ensure that the above guidelines are adhered to. The individuals being photographed must be appropriately dressed for the activity and the photography or recording should focus on the activity rather than on the individual.

Coaching and Photography

All individuals featured must be appropriately dressed for the sport with garments adhering to the dress code of bowls for the appropriate NGB. Any photography or recording should focus on the activity and be recorded in small groups (which may comprise a combination of adults and young individuals). Coaches are allowed to use video equipment as a legitimate coaching aid and means of recording special occasions. However, care should be taken in the dissemination and storage of the material.

Use of photographic and filming equipment by parents, carers and spectators

Whenever parents, carers, or other spectators intend to photograph or video at an event they must be made aware by the Event Organiser, SO/WO that they must be prepared to identify themselves and state their purpose for filming. A specimen Photography event registration form is available on the Sample Forms page.

The Event Organiser and/or Event SO/WO should approach or challenge any person taking photographs who has not made themselves known and/or registered with them. If need be advice may be sought from the Police if this person continues to record images unauthorised within the confines of the event.

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