What is a Privacy Notice?
A privacy notice is a statement published by an organisation which explains how personal and confidential information about service users, staff and visitors is collected, used and shared.
We recognise the importance of protecting personal and confidential information in all that we do, and we take great care to meet our legal and other duties, including compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018.
We use your personal data where we consider it necessary to carry out tasks in the public interest, and to fulfil our public service functions. These tasks and functions have been legally assigned to us under various Acts of Parliament. In certain exceptional circumstances, we may also be obliged to disclose some information we hold about you to other authorities (such as a Court of Law, or the Police). We may also share your information where this is needed in an emergency situation, particularly where providing the information could prevent serious harm to someone (including you), or save someone else’s life.
Why we collect information about you
We aim to provide you with the highest quality care. To do this, we must keep records about you, your support and the care we have provided, or plan to provide, to you and your family. It is important for us to have a complete picture, as this information enables us to provide the right care to meet you and your family’s needs.
What information is collected and by whom
The records we keep can be collected in paper form or electronically (or both) and may include:
• Personal details, including name, address, date of birth, telephone numbers and email addresses.
• In addition to the above, we may also hold sensitive personal information, including details and records of support and interventions; contact we have had with you, such as appointments, attendances and home visits; and relevant information from people who are also involved in supporting you or your family, for example, health and social care professionals and relatives. We may also collect other information about you, such as your sexuality, race or ethnic origin, religious or other beliefs, and whether you have a disability or require additional support with appointments (e.g. an interpreter).
How do we collect your information?
Your information can be collected in a number of different ways. This might be from a referral made by professionals or services you or your family are involved with, for example, schools or health professionals, or perhaps directly from you – in person, over the phone, or on a form you have completed.
How is your information used?
Your information is used in a range of different ways, which include: to provide support or information to children, young people and families; to maintain organisational records; to ensure we have up-to-date communication preferences; and to share successful outcomes with Bath & North East Somerset Council and other funders.
Who will your information be shared with?
To help provide you with the best possible support, sometimes we will need to share your information with others. However, any sharing of information will always be governed by specific rules and laws. We may share your information with a range of health and social care organisations and regulatory bodies.
We work with a number of organisations and to support this, your information may be securely shared.
Unless there are exceptional circumstances (such as likely risk to the health and safety of others), or a valid reason permitted by law, we will not disclose any information to third parties which can be used to identify you, without consent.
Sometimes we are required by law to disclose or report certain information that may include details that identify you. However, this is only done after formal authority from the courts. This may include reporting a serious crime, or because you or a member of your family is at risk of significant harm.
What choices do you have?
You have the right to refuse (or withdraw) consent to information sharing at any time. This is also referred to as ‘opting out’. If you choose to prevent your information from being disclosed to other authorised professionals involved in you or your family’s support, it might mean the support offered by Southside is limited and, in certain circumstances, it may be withdrawn. The possible consequences of withholding your consent will be fully explained to you at the time should this situation occur.
Protecting your information
Everyone working for, or with Southside, has a legal duty to keep your information secure and confidential at all times. All staff and volunteers are trained in respect of the requirements for keeping data secure and adhere to Southside’s Confidentiality Policy and Procedure.
Strict principles govern our use of your information and our duty to ensure that is kept safe and secure. Your information may be stored within electronic or paper records, or a combination of both. All our records are restricted so that only those individuals who have a need to know the information can get access. This might be through the use of technology or other environmental safeguards.
Southside’s Operational Manager, Lucy Fordham, is our Data Protection Officer, and is responsible for protecting the confidentiality of your information and enabling appropriate sharing.
How long do we retain your records?
All our records are stored in accordance with Southside’s Data Protection Policy and Procedure and File Retention Policy and Procedure, setting out the appropriate length of time each type of record is retained.
All records are appropriately reviewed once their retention period has been met, and Southside will decide whether the record still requires retention or should be confidentially destroyed.
How can you access information we hold about you?
Under the terms of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018, you have the right to request access to the information we hold about you. You can also apply:
• On behalf of your child, with your child’s consent. If the child is unable to understand, you can see the records providing this is in the child’s best interests.
• On behalf of someone who is not capable of giving their permission – because of age or illness, for example. You would have to be appointed by a court to do this.
• You can request access to your records by writing (including email) to our Data Protection Officer at the following address: – Southside, Meade House, Wedgwood Rd, Bath BA2 1QN or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
What we ask of you
• Let us know when you change address or name.
• Tell us if any information in your records is incorrect.
• Tell us if you change your mind about how we share the information in your records.
How can you make a complaint?
You have the right to make a complaint if you feel unhappy about how we hold, use or share your information. We would recommend contacting our Data Protection Officer (contact details above) in the first instance to talk through any concerns that you have. Alternatively, you can contact Southside on Tel: 01225 331243
If you remain dissatisfied following the outcome of your complaint, you may then wish to contact the Information Commissioner’s Office. Please note that the Information Commissioner will not normally consider an appeal until you have exhausted your right of complaint to us directly.
The Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House, Cheshire, SK9 5AF
Helpline: 0303 123 1113 (local rate) or 01625 545745