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School Photo Ban

PARENTS have been banned from photographing or filming their children at school swimming carnivals after a Sydney council voted for a bar on poolside cameras.
Instead, proud mothers and fathers will be forced to rely on a single official photographer to get shots of their children competing at Des Renford Aquatic Centre. On Tuesday night, Randwick Council narrowly supported - by 8 votes to 7 - a minute by Mayor Murray Matson banning use of both still and video cameras at the Maroubra pool.
The policy, to be released for public comment, was implemented because of "widespread community concern about increasing incidents of unauthorised photographing of children".
Mr Matson's minute said: "Council must satisfy the concerns of pool users and parents about filming and photographing within the pools.
"Against this must be balanced the legitimate expectations of schools that they can record swimming carnival events for the sake of parents."
While parents and teachers attending swimming carnivals have been told by pool staff that they cannot film the events, schools will be allowed to appoint an official photographer.
Schools must supply the official photographer's name and the area from which he or she will be shooting.
Mr Matson claimed the council has had a protocol banning the use of cameras, including by parents, at the swimming complex since 2003.
That claim was vehemently denied by ALP councillors, who controlled the council during that year.
ALP councillor Dominic Sullivan, who was mayor before March 2004, said:"This policy interferes with the basic rights of parents. Mr Matson is trying to put the blame back on the previous council when the fact is he's the one supporting this policy."

Daily Telegraph (24-2-2005)

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