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>> Statement: [Page 312]

“Haggis had been working with a charity he established to set up schools in Haiti.

These stories reminded him of the child slaves he had encountered in the country. ‘They were ten, twelve years old, signing billion-year contracts—and their parents go long with this! he said of the Sea Org children. ‘And they work morning, noon and night. . . . Scrubbing pots, manual labor—that so deeply touched me. My God, it horrified me!’”

>> True Information: The characterization is false and defamatory.

As a general matter, the Sea Organization does not accept members with small children. In every country where there are Sea Organization bases, members operate on  published Church policies that regulate and define exactly the age at which a Scientologist is eligible join the Sea Organization. It is precisely in accordance with the laws of the land concerning minors.  The minimum age of Sea Organization members is generally the minimum age in any state or country that a person is legally permitted to work, which is commonly ages 16 to 18. The Church of Scientology adheres to all child labor laws and no underage Sea Organization members are permitted to perform tasks prohibited by law. Where local laws regulate the number of hours a minor may work, their schedules are adjusted accordingly. Each jurisdiction is different. Minors are permitted to voluntarily join the Sea Organization, with the consent of a parent, and they usually range from 16 to 18 years of age. Once in the Sea Organization, if the minor’s parents are not also members of the Sea Org, the minor must then have an assigned guardian approved by the minor’s parents.  Schooling is provided at Sea Organization installations for minor Sea Organization members who still need to complete education requirements. This is provided for the legally required number of hours.

This has been Church policy for approximately 25 years.  It is a policy that evolved over time. The Church directives are all in accordance with the regulations on the matter in every country.