Conservation Council bans video recording, photography at public meetings

The National Conservation Council, a year-old council formed under the National Conservation Law, announced Monday that while the public is welcome to attend the meetings, video recording and photography will not be allowed.

In an email to Cayman’s media houses, council chair Christine Rose-Smyth said the new prohibition on recording and a request for reporters to sign in at meetings are intended “to encourage frank discussion by members and most importantly to respect the privacy of any members of the public who may attend.”

She said requests to record and report on the meetings should be made in writing to the Council.

“The Council is not required by legislation to permit the recording or broadcasting of its meetings by sound, video, film, photograph or any other means (this includes blogging or tweeting, posts on social media sites such as Facebook or publishing on video sharing sites),” she said.

The Council has, since its first meeting, been one of the only public bodies to allow reporters to attend regular meetings. The meetings, the chairwoman writes, “are open to attendance by the public and media coverage of the issues discussed at the meeting is always welcome.”

The council is implementing the National Conservation Law, including new rules governing endangered species and a new marine parks proposal.

The next National Conservation Council will be Tuesday, Nov. 24 at 2 p.m. in Room 2038 at the Government Administration Building.