The Society exists to encourage an interest in Photography, both within its membership and in the wider community. In this context, young people are very welcome to join Southport Photographic Society and take part in its activities. The Society has a legal duty of care to such young people, however, and in order to safeguard the interests of all members the following procedures shall apply.
This legislation covers the protection of both children and vulnerable adults, and was introduced in Autumn 2008. For the purpose of the Act, a child is defined as a person under the age of 18. The legislation aims to protect these groups with respect to :
• Sexual abuse
• Emotional abuse
• Physical abuse
• Health and safety issues
• Protection of personal data
Members and visitors under 18 years of age must be accompanied at all meetings and other events by a parent or guardian, or an adult with the specific agreement of the parent/guardian, who will be responsible for their safety at all times. When joining the Society, the membership application form in respect to a child must be signed by their parent / guardian to signify acceptance of this policy. If the child is not to be accompanied at meetings by their parent / guardian, the designated responsible adult(s) taking their place should be named on the membership form.
During the Society’s Annual Programme, portfolios of work covering a wide range of photographic styles and content are frequently shown at meetings. The range of content of these images are expected to be similar to those shown to the public in exhibition galleries. Whether or not images are inappropriate should be judged within this context.
No child shall be put on the Tea/Coffee Rota or be expected to have responsibility for any Society equipment.
Allegations concerning incidents set out in section (2) of this policy should be reported to any member of the Council, who in turn should pass these on immediately to the Secretary. If the allegation is one of abuse, the Secretary shall liaise with the President in deciding what action should be taken. This could be the sensitive interviewing of the individual, the calling of a full Council meeting or the reporting of the allegation to the Social Services Department and the Police. A copy of all written records, reports, notes and correspondence relating to any incident should be kept by the Secretary.
A database of members’ contact details is maintained by the Society. Care is taken to protect this information, as set out in the separate Data Protection Policy. The contact details, including email address, of any child member will be integrated into this database, unless a request for its omission is received from the child’s parent or guardian, through the completion of the relevant section of the Membership Form.
This policy will be reviewed regularly and also immediately after any reported incident.