WEST MERCIA VICTIM SERVICES – VICTIM ADVICE LINE (“VAL”)
SERVICE USERS PRIVACY NOTICE (“NOTICE”)
SUMMARY OF THE NOTICE
A. The Notice on the following pages applies to all persons who use our services.
B. We aim to ensure that any personal information that we receive or collect about you is used fairly and lawfully by us and is only processed by us in accordance with data protection law.
C. The purpose of the Notice is to ensure that we are transparent with you and that you trust us with your personal data. The Notice therefore deals with the following questions:
1. Who does this Notice apply to?
2. What does this Notice cover?
3. What personal information do we hold about you?
4. How do we use the personal information of third parties?
5. Why do we use your personal information and on what legal basis?
6. How do we handle information about criminal convictions?
7. Who may we disclose your personal information to?
8. How secure is the personal information that we collect about you?
9. How long will we keep your personal information?
10. What are your rights in relation to your personal information?
11. When can we make changes to this notice?
12. Who can you contact with questions or complaints?
1. WHO DOES THIS NOTICE APPLY TO?
This Notice applies to you, as a user of our services.
2. WHAT DOES THIS NOTICE COVER?
2.1 The aim of this Notice is to make you aware of:
2.1.1 what personal information we collect;
2.1.2 how we will use your personal information;
2.1.3 who we may disclose your personal information to; and
2.1.4 your rights and choices in relation to your personal information.
2.2 It is important to us that you feel confident to use our services, and that when you do you understand how we will use your personal information and trust us to use that.
2.3 Please note that we are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (the ICO) as a “controller” of personal information, and take our legal responsibilities in relation to data protection very seriously.
2.4 In this Notice references to:
2.4.1 we, us or our means West Mercia Victim Advice Line which is service provided West Mercia Police under a grant from the West Mercia Police & Crime Commissioner by
2.4.2 personal information is information that is about you (or another individual) and which identifies you (or another individual); and
2.4.3 processing (and processed and process) includes collecting, recording, altering, retrieving, storing, using, disclosing or destroying.
3. WHAT PERSONAL INFORMATION DO WE HOLD ABOUT YOU?
We will process personal information about you that either you give to us, that we collect from you, or that we receive from other sources, as explained below.
3.1 Personal information that you provide to us
3.1.1 You may provide us with personal information about yourself, for example:
(a) over the telephone;
(b) when using our online live chat service;
(c) by email;
(d) face-to-face; or
(e) when contacting us online (including using our online enquiry form or via social media).
3.1.2 The personal information that you provide to us may include:
(c) date of birth;
(d) mobile and landline numbers, email or other contact method;
(e) equal opportunities information (including details about your race or ethnicity, religious beliefs and sexual orientation);
(f) details of the crime that you were a party to;
(g) personal details of others impacted by the relevant crime;
(h) feedback on the services that we provide/have provided to you.
3.2 Personal information that we collect about you
3.2.1 When you visit our website we may automatically collect the following personal information about you:
(a) technical information (including the Internet Protocol address (otherwise known as an “IP address”) used to connect your computer to the internet, your login information, browser type and version, time zone setting, browser plug-in types and versions, operating system and platform); and
(b) about your visit (including the full Uniform Resource Locators (otherwise known as a “URL”) clickstream to, through and from our site (including date and time), services and pages you viewed or searched for, page response times, download errors, length of visits to certain pages, page interaction information (such as scrolling, clicks and mouse-hovers), and methods used to browse away from the page and any phone number used to call us).
3.3 Personal information that we receive about you from third parties
3.3.1 We may receive personal information about you from third parties. Those third parties may include:
(a) your next-of-kin or emergency contacts;
(b) where you are under the age of 18, your parent(s) or legal guardian(s);
(c) our partner agencies (including Local Authorities, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioners for West Mercia, the Crown Prosecution Service, the Community Rehabilitation Company and HM Courts and Tribunal Service);
(d) persons or organisations who/which refer you to our services (including other police forces or law enforcement agencies and other victim support service providers);
(e) the perpetrator of the relevant crime (e.g. for the purpose of trying to seek restorative justice).
3.3.2 When personal information is collected by third party organisations directly from you and shared with us, you should be informed at the point of collection by those third parties that your personal information may be shared with us and combined with data collected from multiple sources, unless that third party is exempted from such a requirement. You should also be informed of the purposes for which that data is going to be collected and used.
3.4 Special category information
3.4.1 Some of the personal information that we collect is known as special category information. This means that the information is more sensitive than other types of information and therefore needs more protection.
3.4.2 Special category information is information about your race, ethnic origin, political belief, religious belief, trade union membership, genetics, biometrics, health, sex life and sexual orientation.
4. HOW DO WE USE THE PERSONAL INFORMATION OF THIRD PARTIES?
4.1 When enquiring about our services or when receiving services from us you may provide us with personal information relating to third parties (e.g. the perpetrator of a crime or your next of kin).
4.2 We will use the personal information of those parties in accordance with this Notice and to the extent necessary to protect your legitimate interests and/or vital interests.
4.3 We may also, in order to ensure you receive the most appropriate support and advice, receive information about other persons (e.g. the perpetrator of a crime) from third parties (e.g. West Mercia Police, the Community Rehabilitation Company, the Prison Service). Again, we will use that information in accordance with this Notice and to the extent necessary to protect your legitimate interests and/or vital interests, and to the extent necessary for our legitimate interest in providing the best possible support and advice to you.
5. WHY DO WE USE YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION AND ON WHAT LEGAL BASIS?
5.1 We process your personal information to help us meet out statutory obligations to provide victims support services for victims of crime.
5.2 In particular to:
5.2.1 Enable us to provide emotional support, practical assistance and advice to victims of crime in line with the Code of Practice for Victims of Crime;
5.2.2 Enable us to make referrals (with consent where appropriate) to specialist support services for victims of crime, including independent domestic violence advisers, independent victim adviser services, restorative justice services and counselling services;
5.2.3 Enable us to measure the progress made by victims who are being supported to deliver continuous improvement and further investment in services to support victims
5.2.4 Conduct research into matters affecting victims, such as, what emotional or practical support is most effective in helping victims cope and recover from the impact of the crime.
5.2.5 Ensure victim feedback on services is captured and used to support continuous improvement
5.2.6 Support and manage our employees.
5.2.7 Understand the effectiveness and efficiency of the services commissioned by the Police & Crime Commissioner.
5.3 Your personal information may be used by us (including our staff) and disclosed to third parties (including the third parties from whom we receive your personal information as noted above). For each of the purposes we have set out the legal bases upon which we use and share your personal information in the table below.
Purpose for Processing Your Personal Data Legal Basis
To communicate with you about the services we can or are providing to you. This is in our legitimate interests in order to process and carry out our services.
Where the information is special category information, we may process that information for reasons of substantial public interest, or where necessary for the provision of social care services.
To help us to assess what services are appropriate for you. This is in our legitimate interests in order to process and administer the services and/or in your legitimate interests in order to ensure that you receive appropriate advice and support from us.
Where the information is special category information, we may process that information for reasons of substantial public interest or where necessary for the provision of social care services.
To communicate with other professionals and third parties (including Independent Sexual Violence Advisors) that we may seek to or actually refer you to, or whom are already providing you with care or other support services. This is in our legitimate interests in order to administer our services and/or in your legitimate interests to ensure that you receive the most appropriate quality care and support from all relevant bodies.
Where the information is special category information, we may process that information where necessary for the provision of social care services.
To notify you about any changes to our services. This is in our legitimate interests in order to carry out our services.
Where we need to process special category information to notify you of changes to our services, we may process that information where necessary for the provision of social care services and/or for reasons of substantial public interest.
We may ask you what you think about our services and to maybe complete a satisfaction survey. This feedback will be used to help us improve those services. This is in our legitimate interests in order to improve the services that you and others who contact us for advice and support receive from us.
The feedback will always be anonymised where it contains categories of sensitive personal information and, as a matter of good practice, even where it does not contain such information.
We may ask you to share your experience of our services with us for us to share with the general public / for marketing purposes. Explicit consent.
You are free to refuse or withdraw your consent at any time. Refusing or withdrawing consent will not impact upon the services that you receive from us.
To monitor our service delivery This is in both our legitimate interests in order to ensure that we provide you with the most appropriate and timely advice and support.
Where we need to process special category
Purpose for Processing Your Personal Data Legal Basis
information to monitor our delivery we may process that information for reasons of substantial public interest and/or where necessary for the provision of social care services.
To communicate with third parties (e.g. the police, CPS and your next-of-kin) where we have concerns about your safety/wellbeing, or the safety/wellbeing of others, or have grounds to suspect criminal behaviour. This may be in the legitimate or vital interests of any victim or alleged victim and/or in compliance with a legal obligation.
Where the information that we are processing is special category information, we may process that information for reasons of substantial public interest and/or where necessary in relation to legal claims.
Alternatively, we may seek to rely upon an exemption relating to the prevention and detection of crime or the apprehension and prosecution of offenders.
To manage and operate our activities. Where the information that we are processing is special category information, we may process that information for reasons of substantial public interest and/or where necessary for the provision of social care services. In certain circumstances we may, as an alternative, seek your explicit consent.
To resolve queries and enquiries relating to the services. Where the information that we are processing is special category information, we may process that information for reasons of substantial public interest.
To manage a dispute, appeal or complaint. This is in our legitimate interests in order to provide our services and to benefit you and others who come to us for confidential support and advice.
Where the information is special category information, we may process that information for reasons of substantial public interest. In certain circumstances we may, as an alternative, seek your explicit consent.
To comply with any legal or regulatory obligations (e.g. safeguarding obligations or a court order) and in doing so, will need to disclose your personal information to third parties, including relevant regulators and our professional advisors (including our lawyers). This is to comply with our legal obligations.
Where the information is special category information, we may process that information where necessary in relation to legal claims and/or for reasons of substantial public interest and/or for reasons of public interest in the area of public health and/or for the
Purpose for Processing Your Personal Data Legal Basis
management of social care services.
We may need to provide access to such third parties engaged by us to update our electronic systems, fix any issues with our systems and review, monitor and improve their security features. It is in both our legitimate interests to ensure that the systems that we use to store and process your data are secure. We are, in any event, under a legal obligation to ensure that is the case. We will ensure that such third parties are bound by obligations of confidentiality.
We may need to share your personal information to those third parties that we engage to carry out confidential waste disposal services. It is in both our legitimate interests that we dispose of your personal data securely and we are also under a legal obligation to do so. We will ensure that such third parties are bound by data protection obligations relating to the information that they dispose of on our behalf.
6. HOW DO WE HANDLE INFORMATION ABOUT CRIMINAL CONVICTIONS?
6.1 Given the nature of our services and the people that we support, we will process information about criminal convictions. Those may relate to you and/or to a relevant third party.
6.2 If you require further details about how we handle information about criminal convictions, and the safeguards that we have in place when handling such information, please contact The Service Manager at VAL using their contact details in section 12.1 below.
7. WHO MAY WE DISCLOSE YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION TO?
7.1 We may share your personal information with various third parties as noted in the table above.
7.2 We may also disclose your personal information to other third parties, for example:
7.2.1 if we are under a duty to disclose or share your personal information in order to comply with any legal obligation, or in order to enforce or apply the agreements concerning you (including agreements between you and us); and
7.2.2 if we cease to carry out the services, or engage a sub-contractor to support with the delivery of the services, we will disclose your personal information to, for example, the replacement service provider(s) and/or the sub-contractor(s) (as appropriate), to ensure a smooth transition/delivery of the services.
8. HOW SECURE IS THE PERSONAL INFORMATION THAT WE COLLECT ABOUT YOU?
8.1 We have put in place appropriate security measures to prevent your personal information from being accidentally lost, used or accessed in an unauthorised way, altered or disclosed.
8.2 We limit access to your personal information to those employees, agents, contractors and other trusted third parties who need-to-know or receive your personal information in order to help us fulfil our obligations to you and under data protection law. They will only process your personal information on our instructions, and they are subject to a duty of confidentiality.
8.3 We have put in place procedures to deal with any suspected data security breach and will notify you and any applicable regulator of a suspected breach where we are legally required to do so.
8.4 We do not routinely transfer personal information outside of the UK. On the rare occasions that we may share your personal information outside the UK, we will ensure that:
(a) We have a lawful basis for sharing your personal information; where appropriate we will seek your prior consent.
(b) The level of information transferred is kept to a minimum.
(c) The third party recipient(s) agree to respect the security of your personal information and to treat it in accordance with relevant data protection legislation.
9. HOW LONG WILL WE KEEP YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION?
9.1 Subject to section 9.2 your personal data will be stored for the duration of your engagement with us and for a period of six years from the date that you first engage with us either directly or indirectly. However, we will review this to ensure that the information we hold is relevant and up-to-date during this time.
9.2 Our six year retention period may be extended in the event that legal or regulatory proceedings are brought by or concerning you. In those circumstances we may need to retain some relevant personal information for as long as is necessary for the purposes of such proceedings and in line with the guidelines of the Criminal Proceedings and Investigations Act 1996.
10. WHAT ARE YOUR RIGHTS IN RELATION TO YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION?
10.1 The rights that you have in relation to the personal information that we process about you apply in various circumstances and are subject to certain exemptions. These rights are summarised below.
Your Right Summary of that Right
Right of access You have the right to receive a copy of the personal information that we hold about you, subject to certain exemptions.
Any access request is, subject to certain exemptions, free of charge.
Please note that we may require further information in order to respond to your request (for instance, evidence of your identity and information to enable us to locate the specific personal information you require).
Right to rectify You have the right to ask us to correct personal information that we hold about you where that information is incorrect or incomplete.
Right to erasure You have the right to ask that your personal information be deleted in certain circumstances. For example (i) where your personal information is no longer necessary in relation to the purposes for which it was collected or otherwise used; (ii) if you withdraw your consent and there is no other legal ground for which we rely on for the continued use of your personal information; (iii) if you object to the use of your personal information (see further below); (iv) if we have used your personal information unlawfully; or (v) if your personal information needs to be erased to comply with a legal obligation.
Right to restrict the use of your personal information You have the right to suspend our use of your personal information in certain circumstances. For example (i) where you think your personal information is inaccurate, and only for such period to enable us to verify the accuracy of your personal information; (ii) the use of your personal information is unlawful and you oppose the erasure of your personal
information and request that it is suspended instead; (iii) we no longer
Your Right Summary of that Right
need your personal information, but your personal information is required by you for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims; or (iv) you have objected to the use of your personal information and we are verifying whether our grounds for the use of your personal information override your objection.
Right to data portability You have the right to obtain your personal information in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format and for it to be transferred to another organisation, where it is technically feasible.
However, please note that this right only applies where the use of your personal information is based on your consent or for the performance of a contract, and when the use of your personal information is carried out by automated (i.e. electronic) means.
Right to object You have the right to object to the use of your personal information in certain circumstances. For example, where you have grounds relating to your particular situation and we use your personal information for our legitimate interests (or those of a third party).
Right to withdraw consent You have the right to withdraw your consent at any time where we rely on consent to use your personal information.
Right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office You have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office, where you think we have not used your personal information in accordance with data protection law. Please see section 12.2 for relevant contact details.
10.2 If you wish to exercise any of the rights in the table above, please get in touch with us by using the contact details at section 12.1 below.
11. WHEN CAN WE MAKE CHANGES TO THIS NOTICE?
11.1 We may update this Notice at any time. When we do, we will publish the new Notice online and will try to inform you of these changes when you next contact us.
11.2 The updated Notice will take effect as soon as it has been published on our website (http://www.victimadviceline.org.uk/privacy) or otherwise communicated to you (whichever is earliest).
12. WHO CAN YOU CONTACT WITH QUESTIONS OR COMPLAINTS?
12.1 If you have any comments or questions about this Notice, or the way we use your personal information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, please feel free to speak to any member of our staff that you feel comfortable to talk to and they will point you in the right direction. They can be contacted on 0800 952 3000. Our hours are Mon-Fri 8am to 8pm and Sat 9am to 5 pm.
12.2 If you are not happy with the way we deal with your question or complaint, you have the right to complain to the ICO. You can contact the ICO on 0303 123 1113 or by visiting their website at www.ico.org.uk.