Why Photography isn’t Allowed at Galas

You may notice, at the start of every gala in addition to the safety announcements, there is line something like this:

“In line with the ASA’s child protection policy, there is to be no photography at this event.”

A link to the ASA’s policy can be found at the end of this post, but the main aims of it are as follows:

a. To prevent the use, adaptation, or copying of images for child abuse, either on the Internet or in
b. To prevent the possible identification of a child when an image is accompanied by significant
personal information, which can lead to the child being ʻgroomedʼ.
c. To prevent the identification and locating of children where there are safeguarding children
concerns. Such cases would include, for example, children who could be compromised by
an image because:
• They are removed from their family for their own safety.
• There are restrictions on their contact with one parent following a parental separation.
• They are a witness in criminal proceedings.

Despite this, we still get the odd parent trying to take a video of their child during a race. We don’t want to be misers (really, we don’t!), but one video can spiral out of control very quickly.

If we focus on point A of the policy wording above, let’s say that mum Jane films Joe’s race, and puts this video online for her friends to watch. Her friends like this, and this is shared with their friends. Let’s say that Jane has 50 friends, and 10 of her friends like the video. If they also have 50 friends, this video is suddenly in the scope of 500 people who you may not know. There is then the possibility of the footage being adapted for child abuse.

It is also often the case that the body responsible for the swimming pool, in our case Legacy Leisure, will also have a policy regarding the use of photographic equipment, which we have to adhere to.

There will be time when an official photographer will be present at an event, for example Counties or Nationals. These photographers will have been subjected to a DBS (the new name for a CRB) check, and the ASA has guidelines in place to ensure images taken cannot be used maliciously.

If you do not want your child’s photo to be taken, make sure that you tell whoever is in charge of the event so that this can be recorded.

Finally, if you have concerns about anyone you see using a camera, please report it to a coach or a member of staff at the leisure centre. You can also contact our Welfare Officer (currently Julie Starsmoore), or the ASA’s swimline if you have any concerns relating to a swimmer.

ASA Photography Policy