Dear YPAD and YPAG Advisory Panel Members, Ambassadors, Certified Dance Professionals, and Volunteers:
Thank you for your important work with YPAD and/or YPAG! We are so grateful for the time, energy, and resources that you give to the movement. YPAD – Youth Protection Advocates in Dance and YPAG — Youth Protection Advocates in Gymnastics, embrace and recognize that we have members in YPAD and YPAG from different Faiths, sexual orientations, ethnicity, cultures, beliefs, socioeconomic status, regions, political parties, skin color, body shape, skill sets, abilities, genders, etc. You are accepted here. We need to be the example of how a group of people with this much diversity functions together and unites to educate on a common cause; our children’s human right to believe that it is because of the differences listed above that they are valuable and worthy. They are unique beings with their own signature and purpose and these differences were not a mistake and they matter. YOU MATTER. Our children are watching and listening closely, specifically on social media, and we must show them we will love each other, ask questions and listen to understand each other on a deeper level, find common ground, offer empathy, share, and be open hearted and honor each others’ humanity. WE NEED TO BE THE EXAMPLE IN PERSON AND ONLINE.
As YPAD and YPAG gain momentum each of you will be looked upon as surrogates of our message. We need to be mindful when we post on social media as it represents not only ourselves, but YPAD and YPAG as organizations and a movement. We live in a culture where people may choose whether or not to look deeper into our education based on one single post they may see from people speaking about our mission. Our Social Media Creed is to insure that everyone who is a public voice for YPAD and YPAG uses their social media influence to represent YPAD and YPAG in a way that reflects our mission and inclusive rhetoric. Inclusiveness by definition means we embrace those who have differing beliefs than ours. We are leading through example. At times this takes restraint and may be challenging as the topics YPAD and YPAG addresses provoke valid emotions and at times anger. We believe the outcome will display a needed healthy model of social media use when discussing topics that may create divisiveness. A model that invites ALL people regardless of where they are on their YPAD and/or YPAG journey to review our evidence based research free of shaming and blaming. The language and tone we use when discussing YPAD and YPAG is not only a positive example for youth, but for the adults who see the class and grace that permeates our posting power.
We ask everyone to review this creed, and help each other with any challenges that may arise. If emotions are running high and we need to vent we can reach out to each other in private format to process and receive support. Should we fall short, we can look to each other as members of the YPAD and YPAG Advisory Panel, Ambassador and Volunteer community for support and solutions. We can hold each other and ourselves accountable to the standards set out in this creed, free of judgement and in unity to manage our social media with careful thought and self-reflection.
Leslie Scott- YPAD Founder
Social Media Standards
I agree that if I include any content described below on a page or social media account of any kind, I will not “friend,” “follow”, accept requests or share my social media handles with youth dance. In addition, I agree to never post, share or disseminate any public social media content (whether my own or by others) that includes:
- Sexually suggestive photos, videos, statements or activity of yourself or others
- Hypersexualized dancing by anyone, especially dancers and gymnasts under the age of 18
- Posts/Videos that glorify drug/alcohol use, violence or gang-related activity, cursing
- Use of photos or images without permission of the individual or entity
- Derogatory comments about others (even if you think they deserve it)
- Negative comments about your studio/gym/organization, other studios/gyms/organizations, dances, gymnasts, or people who come in contact through dance or gymnastics related events
- Hate speech
- Body shaming of themselves or others, including celebrities
- Using photos or videos of youth dancers and gymnasts that break the artistic standards for costume, poses, facials, music, movement and concepts. Remember perception is reality for people sifting through your photo and post choices. Try to throw the net as wide as possible regarding possible scrutiny and erring on the side of caution.
With the realization that youth dancers and gymnasts I may meet, teach, judge, etc. through my workplace may spend more time with me online then in person, I agree that if I want to post social media content that does not meet the standards above, I will:
- Use privacy settings on my primary social media accounts to ensure youth dancers do not have access to this content.
- Create separate accounts on which to connect with youth students in a role model capacity if there is the desire to connect with youth.