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I am writing with great concern having received an image, via email, of a recently deceased person in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. This seems to be a modern practice, worldwide, made easier with the arrival of smartphones with cameras.

Some photographers appear to lack sensitivity, common decency, and basic care for other human beings who are placed in positions of being unable to protect or defend themselves, at such incredibly sad times.

I am simply appalled at this abhorrent behaviour. What possesses someone to think that others might enjoy or want to see such images? Would they (the photographer) enjoy it if, similar images of themselves or their family members were to be shared by people all over the world, who had no idea who they were, at such a distressing time for their loved ones? Have they considered what a family member, seeing such images, must think or feel in their time of shock and grief?

Before taking such images of people placed in tragic circumstances, I would ask that photographers who engage in the practice, consider the feelings of family, friends or carers of the injured or deceased, in their time of grief.

Consider also the possibilities that a relative might see such images before they are officially, gently informed by the authorities of the sad news of their loved ones. Once an image like that is seen, it cannot be unseen.

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This is a time when family members deserve thoughtfulness, kindness, care and consideration, a time when the deceased should be treated with the greatest respect and the utmost dignity.

I am grateful to the local papers for editing the images before printing.

Kind regards

Paula Mart

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