The World Community for Christian Meditation in the USA expects its participants to demonstrate respect for duties and rights of parents and other conservators of minor children and youth with regard to written consent before using any identifiers, images, or recordings of those children and youth.
- There must be written proof of parental consent to use anything identifying a person under 18 years of age including photos in connection with MWC activities (contact your local or regional coordinator to obtain consent forms). Original of such written proof will be retained on the local level (event or regional coordinator) and a copy in electronic scan format forwarded to the national level MWC Coordination Group email address shown on our Meditation with Children main page.
- You should not be creating the photograph or video unless you already have the written consents from parents of minors involved in the photo or video recording. Audio recording is discouraged unless by special clearance with the WCCM-USA Executive Committee (see more below).
- If you are going to publish for fundraising purposes photos of parents attending MWC activities, you will need to obtain a written release from them as well (for use of their own photos, as it will pertain to MWC matters and thus to the vulnerable population of children and youth).
- You will need to make it clear on or with the finished photo or video that there is a consent already obtained and link the item to the consent document(s) in some way.
- You will need to send a copy of the item along with a copy of the parental consent to WCCM-USA MWC Coordination Group at the email address shown on our main webpage.
- Publishing a child’s name (with or without details of specific location) is not a good practice because of recognized safety issues.
- Regarding Internet use of photos or recordings: due to child safety concerns, any photographic images or video/audio recordings of minors will require specific written consent for internet publishing from parent or guardian.
- Parents should receive a copy of or link to whatever was produced using their child’s image or recording.
- State laws regarding audio recordings are different across the nation. Generally all parties must be aware of the recording as it is being made, and all parties must consent. As noted above, the WCCM-USA Executive Committee discourages audio recordings due to legal issues. Please contact the EC through our dedicated MWC email address if you have a special project for which you want audio recording; they will need to discern whether to make an exception.
Our country’s laws make it clear that parents and legal guardians have rights, duties, and responsibilities toward safety and protection of their children.
In our WCCM-USA MWC work with vulnerable populations we must remember that we must not photograph or record activities with children and youth without first obtaining permission from the persons legally responsible for those children and youth.
- The parents and guardians of those children must consent before we make photos and recordings.
- Our plans for use of their children’s photos and/or recordings must be outlined to the parent / guardian;
- They must provide written consent to those plans for use of the photos or recordings.
- We must follow through with the intent of their consent and limit our use to what they agreed to and nothing more.
- If the permission is not granted (in writing) first, the photos and/or recordings must not be made.
- Note that in a group all parties must consent in order for the photography or recording to proceed (unless it is a general event with no minors involved). The consent must be unanimous. Only one person’s lack of consent will stop the recording or photography.
- For legal purposes, it is advisable not to audio-record MWC events unless you have cleared it with WCCM-USA Executive Committee ahead of time as noted above.
- Audio-recording an adult MWC speaker (with their prior written consent) is acceptable as long as there are no minors involved or present. Check with the WCCM-USA Executive Committee (via the MWC National Coordinators’ email shown on our main webpage) during your planning stages to clarify questions.
(updated 07/29/14 las)