Please take WWOOF rules seriously.
Please take WWOOF rules seriously Much of our work at WWOOF Japan is towards: Accountability Safety Fairness Genuine, quality experiences Without exception, we insist all WWOOFers and Hosts are current members of WWOOF Japan. It is a first & fundamental step towards accountability, safety, fairness, & endeavor to have WWOOFing in Japan a genuine & quality experience. Those who ignore WWOOF rules pay a penalty equal to at least one membership payment for each person involved in the wrongdoing, or have their membership revoked. Hosts insist we have a zero tolerance to people ignoring WWOOF rules, rightly sighting the potential for that same person to ignore what rules, values and preferences that they might have at their place. WWOOFers make clear to us that they do not want to be WWOOFing along side people who ignore WWOOF rules; (if he cheats on membership,can I leave my personal belongings in the room that I share with him?); (if she has ignored WWOOF rules, is that all, or will she bring be other problems that could represent a physical danger to me?). WWOOFers who follow WWOOF rules can’t and shouldn’t be expected to have to make judgment on the veracity of claims made by people who have ignored WWOOF rules, about their thinking, intentions & moral standing. They rightly expect part of their membership fee should go toward having the WWOOF Japan office see that WWOOF rules are adhered to. They don't want to find a host is full with another WWOOFer’s reservation and cannot therefore accept their application, but that the other WWOOFer is not a member yet. And why do I have to pay, and him not!?! Please take WWOOF rules seriously. Claims of 'special circumstances' will be deemed to NOT mitigate the wrongdoing. Examples of claims made when people are asked to pay penalties are: 1) I just used my partner’s Handbook to contact hosts while my membership is being processed. 2) I was going to join later. 3) That person read my Handbook and used it to contact hosts, and I didn’t know, or give them my permission. 4) Sorry about that. I’ve been so busy these days. Please forget this time. I’ll remember next time. I promise. 5) It was a mistake. I am not dishonest. I did not set out to be a cheat. I did intend to do the right thing. 6) I didn’t realize my membership period had elapsed. 7) I contacted hosts for my friend too. He is waiting for his membership to be processed I think. Or, if he hasn’t sent his application form and payment yet, he was going to send it soon I am sure. 8) I feel like I am being treated like a common criminal. 9) Just used my elapsed Handbook to contact hosts while my new membership was being processed. 10) I’ve explained I’m sorry, that I made a mistake, but the WWOOF office won’t let the matter die, & says I must pay a penalty for both myself & my friend. 11) I didn’t tell this person to come with me to the host. They just followed me there. 12) WWOOF should be free. 13) The WWOOF office doesn’t care about my situation. You WWOOF office people are a cold and hard lot. Please, please follow WWOOFing rules. It is so very unpleasant for us to have to act when people don’t. We don’t accept these and similar claims, and ask all people who ignore WWOOF rules to pay a penalty equal to at least one membership fee for each person involved. We invite people to specify a charity or country to which they would prefer the payment be directed, and we do our best to allocate it in that way. When we contact people asking them to pay a penalty, experience shows us that this often takes far too much time. The person to whom we write writes back over and over again sighting one of the above examples or similar, feels offended, or badly treated, etc. While this is understandable, we ask those people to understand that: - What is happening to them is a result of the actions they have taken. - We can’t and therefore don’t attempt to make judgment on the veracity of claims people make about their thinking, intentions, moral standing, and similar. - We can’t spend so much time on them, when the other 99.9% of WWOOFers who do the right thing have needs that we are obliged to give a priority to. - We therefore work to address these matters quickly, by offering the person two options, namely: 1) Pay the penalty(s), or 2) Have their membership revoked and a description of the actions they have taken passed onto other groups. If the person feels they are right, and WWOOF Japan is wrong, then they can feel confident that others will interpret the situation as they do. - In the absence of receipt of a prompt reply from the person and cooperation in proceeding with option number 1, we deem that they have elected option number 2, and proceed on that basis. - We feel this and related policies are fare, accountable to all, and make this information transparent for all to see. - We will give this and similar material to people who ignore WWOOF rules, to whom we ask to pay penalties. - Having such rules might not guarantee that WWOOF in Japan is a safe and quality experience for all, but it surly must be conducive to making WWOOFing in Japan safer and more of a quality experience than it would be if we had no such rules. Should a WWOOFer feel a host has behaved wrongly, then they SHOULD tell us about it. Understand that we do monitor all goings on carefully, welcome feedback from WWOOFers, and do act on it. In the face of a problem with a host, WWOOFers should not mistakenly think that "... ah, I guess hosts are just prone to be like this", or, ".... even if I report this, most likely nothing will happen".... , etc.