Children Under 18
On this page you'll find information pertinent to children who are between the ages of thirteen and seventeen.You'll also find the form needed to request information about what personal information Encouragemint has on file or was posted online to Encouragemint by your child along with information about how to request that personal information about or from your child be deleted.
Advanced Consent Not Needed
Children between the ages of thirteen and seventeen may freely engage themselves online. Prior consent from a parent or guardian is not required for children thirteen through seventeen to register with this website, actively participate in the Forums by posting messages, post comments to articles, and/or otherwise communicate with us and/or through this website. While children under the age of eighteen are not eligible to obtain counseling services, they are otherwise granted full rights and privileges to use this website and its various offerings.
What About COPPA?
The Children's Online Privacy Protections Act of 1998 (abbreviated COPPA) was enacted by Congress with the objective of providing parents/guardians control over what information is collected from their young children online. It relates to situations where websites, mobile apps, and other online services collect, use, and/or disclose personal information about children under the age of thirteen. Children who are thirteen or older, along with adults do not fall under COPPA regulations. Please read our COPPA Policy and see the Federal Trade Commission's list of frequently asked questions available here for additional information.
Of course parents can always tell their children that they may not use particular websites or even the Internet as a whole.
While there is no existing legislation that pertains specifically to the online protection of the personal information of children between thirteen and seventeen years of age, parents of children under eighteen do remain certain other rights.
While parents and guardians cannot limit access or prevent their children from participating online through Encouragemint.org, they do have the ability to review our records and see what personal information about their child may be posted online. In this manner, our aim is to help empower parents/guardians and to keep children of all ages safe.
Requesting a Child's Information
A child’s personal information includes personal information provided by a child under the age of eighteen and may include such information as their full name, their home or another address, such as a school or friend’s house, online username, email address, a phone number, social security number, photograph, video, or audio recording, or other similar information about the child or others in the child’s life.
While this only applies to information provided by the child in question and not information about that child provided by another individual, Encouragemint will usually err on the side of caution and remove such personal information when we know the individual to be under eighteen. However, we reserve the right to use our discretion in determining what information to remove and what to hold on to.
By completing and returning this form, Encouragemint will provide you with the type of information about your child that we have on record and/or what information we are aware of your child having publicly posted. For instance, we will inform you if your child has participated in our online forums. We will not provide explicit details however of what was discussed in the forums. The forums are open to the public for reading and you can easily access for yourself the exact messages your child may have posted. We will be happy to provide guidance or instructions on doing so if requested. You also have the right to review any records we may have on file about your child such as communication between your child and Encouragemint personnel, so long as providing such information would not reasonably be expected to cause potential harm or injury to the child.
We realize that some people may attempt to obtain a child’s personal information for the wrong reasons, such as with the intention of hurting them. This is why we initially provide parents and guardians the type of information posted online at Encouragemint.org or held by Encouragemint, without releasing the precise information itself. For example, we might inform you that your child posted the address of their school online, but will not provide the actual address. This is to protect your child in the event that someone is posing as a parent/guardian to improperly obtain a child’s personal information.
If you need the precise details and actual information provided by your child or posted online by your child, we first ask that you
provide a copy of a birth certificate, adoption papers, legal custody papers, school records, or other governmental, medical, or religious paperwork showing both your name and your child’s name and confirming the relationship between the two of you. Such information must also confirm the child’s age.
Deleting a Child's Information
Encouragemint will upon your request delete personal information provided to us by your child. We will not make changes to the personal information provided by your child, but will gladly delete any personal information they’ve posted online and if you wish also cancel and delete their account (if applicable).
This form should only be completed if you have already submitted the appropriate Child Records Request form and received a response from Encouragemint. Once you have reviewed that document you may complete this form in order to request that we delete certain, specific items. When submitting this form, please also submit the document you received from Encouragemint in response to your original request to view your child’s records.
Please note that some information cannot be deleted. Encouragemint will not delete its own records containing information about your child. You may review these records and have the additional right to submit a signed and dated letter referencing anything you may dispute or disagree with along with any amendments you would like to make (e.g. if we have the wrong date of when a personal event occurred). All personal records we hold are securely kept, but will not be deleted.
Please also read the following section before submitting the Child Information Deletion Request form.
Automatic Deletion of Personal Information
Encouragemint believes in protecting the privacy rights of all users and registered members regardless of their age. Therefore we will normally err on the side of caution and remove any explicitly personal information or identifying information we find posted online at Encouragemint.org. This includes things such as a person’s address, phone number, or social security number. If you find this sort of information posted on Encouragemint.org either about yourself or another person , you do not need to fill out any of the following forms. You may simply contact us by email, alert us of the explicitly personal information and the location of where it's posted online and we will promptly have it removed.