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Privacy policy

Privacy Notice for Parents and Carers

Who we are:

Family Futures CIC is a not for profit, independent Adoption Agency in London, registered with Ofsted. We specialise in providing assessment and treatment services for children who are traumatised and have attachment difficulties, as well as providing support to adoptive parents, special guardians or foster carers. As a social CIC we are subject to particular rules, which include, requiring us to apply any profit or surplus that we make during the year into improving services and supporting our staff.

Most of our services are provided under contracts with local authorities and the Adoption Support Fund.

How we use your information:

The purpose of this privacy notice is to tell you how Family Futures collects and processes information about you in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It tells you:

  • about the GDPR and our commitment to meet the requirements of the regulation
  • what information we collect about you
  • why we collect and use this information
  • the legal basis for collecting information about you
  • how it is collected
  • how it is stored
  • how long we store the information we collect about you
  • who we share information with
  • why we share this information
  • your rights

About the General Data Protection Regulation:

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a legal framework that sets guidelines for the collection and processing of personal information of individuals within the European Union (EU). GDPR came into effect across the EU on May 25, 2018.  GDPR replaces the Data Protection Act 1998 and is supported by the UK’s Data Protection Act 2018, which became law on the same date.

Our commitment to meet the requirements of the regulation includes:

  • meeting the GDPR guidelines for the collection and processing of personal identifiable information, your information
  • undertaking regular reviews of our Data Protection policy
  • keeping your information safe
  • fully respecting your rights under GDPR

What information we collect about you

The categories of information we collect, process hold and share about you or your child as appropriate includes:

  • personal information (such as name, date of birth and address)
  • characteristics (such as gender, ethnicity and disability)
  • information relating to episodes of being a child in need (such as referral information, assessment information, Section 47 information, Initial Child Protection information and Child Protection Plan information)
  • information about the child e.g. relevant medical information, special educational needs information, behavioural information.
  • episodes of being looked after (such as important dates, information on placements)
  • adoptions (such as dates of key court orders and decisions)
  • the placing local authority or the local authority you live in
  • details and notes about assessment and treatment including notes and reports about you
  • information from people who care for you and know you well, such as health professionals and relatives.
  • where applicable your bank account details

It may also include more sensitive information (defined in the GDPR as ‘Special Category’ Data) such as details relating to your sexuality, race, your religion or beliefs, and whether you have a disability, allergies or health conditions. It is important for us to have a complete picture, as this information assists staff to deliver the appropriate assessment and treatment to meet your needs.

Why we collect and use this information

We use this Personal Data to:

  • carry out assessments and tests, i.e. to help us to find out how we can best help you
  • provide treatment to your children and families and monitor their progress
  • work effectively with other organisations who may be involved in your case
  • improve individual treatment
  • plan services
  • assess, evaluate and improve the quality of our services
  • to process any payment you might make e.g. to pay for a course or to process a refund e.g. for travel expenses
  • to carry out research
  • inform and report to Government bodies, such as Ofsted

However, where possible, when using information to inform future service provision, non-identifiable information will be used.

If you have any questions about how we are collecting and using your data, please don’t hesitate to ask our staff or contact our Data Protection Lead details of which are set out at the end of this privacy notice.

The legal basis for collecting information about you

We collect and process information about children and families to whom we provide services. By law we need to have a lawful basis for processing your personal data.

We process your data because

  • You have consented to us processing it;
  • We are required to do so in order to fulfil a contract that we have with you;
  • We have a legal obligation to do so – generally under the Care Standards Act 2000;
  • It is necessary to protect the vital interests of a data subject of another person (generally this would be in safeguarding instances);
  • We are required to do so in our performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority.

We process your special category data because

  • It is necessary under employment, social security or social protection law;
  • It is necessary for us to provide and manage social care services;
  • It is necessary for us to provide our assessment and treatment service;
  • It is necessary when involved in the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims or where courts are acting in their judicial capacity;
  • We are required to provide data to our regulator, Ofsted, as part of our legal obligations and to the CVAA.

We may also process your data with your consent. If we need to ask for your permission, we will offer you a clear choice and ask that you confirm to us that you consent. We will also explain clearly to you what we need the data for and how you can withdraw your consent.

Please note some special category data is anonymised e.g. when providing statistical data to Ofsted.

Requirement to carry out Police checks

As an Adoption Agency we have a lawful responsibility to make sure that any prospective adoptive parents do not pose a risk to the children who could be placed with them. Therefore, we carry out police checks to confirm that you have no convictions or cautions that would prevent you from adopting. The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) searches police records and barred list information, and then issues a DBS certificate to the applicant.

How it is collected

Whilst the majority of children looked after information you provide to us is mandatory, some of it is provided to us on a voluntary basis. In order to comply with the data protection legislation, we will inform you whether you are required to provide certain information to us or if you have a choice in this.

Information is collected in a number of ways:

  • verbally – over the telephone with an administrator or assessment and therapy team member
  • when you are in an assessment or therapy session;
  • manually when you fill in referral, assessment and other forms;
  • via the website when you fill in a booking or enquiry form
  • via electronic or postal communications or records completed by a nurse, GP, administrator, school, specialist unit consultant or hospital-based staff and clinicians;
  • directly given by social services, carers, parents, siblings over the phone or in person;
  • in emergency situations by social services, police or ambulance service staff.

 How it is stored

There are strict rules and procedures we have to follow to govern our use of your Personal Data and our duty to ensure it is kept safe and secure.

Information is kept in secure electronic and paper records on our information systems and accessed by staff through desktop, laptop and other mobile devices.  Paper records are kept securely locked away when not in use. Such access is strictly restricted to staff provided with the equipment, passwords and other security devices we use to ensure that only those people who need to see your Personal Data in order to process it correctly can do so.

How long we store the information we collect about you

Some records, such as those relating to child protection, fostering and adoption are subject to statutory requirements and have a specific retention period:

  • An “adoption agency must keep information in relation to a person’s adoption for at least 100 years from the date of the adoption order (Section 56, Adoption and Children Act 2002 and Reg. 6 Disclosure of Adoption Information (Post-Commencement Adoptions) Regulations 2005)”.  This includes all assessment and treatment, and adoption cases.
  • Looked After Children records are kept for 75 years
  • The records on the assessment process to check the suitability of prospective adoptive parents that subsequently led to a placement are retained for 100 years from the date of adoption
  • Adopters where their application is refused or not proceeded with is kept for 25 years.
  • Records of Consultations where they have not proceeded into assessment, are kept until the child reaches 18 years old or when the child reaches 24 years if they  consented to the service
  • Information gathered in the process of an Initial Enquiry (that did not progress to assessment) are destroyed 1 year after closure
  • Complaints/Management Inquiries are retained for 6 years
  • Staff records – 6 years for administrative staff and 25 years after their period of employment ended for therapy staff
  • Information about financial support is destroyed 6 years after the end of the financial year.

 Who we share this information with

Third parties are organisations we have a legal reason to share your data with. These include:

  • Parts of the health and care system we might work with such as local hospitals, the GP, social workers and other health and care professionals;
  • The Local Authority;
  • Organisations we have a legal obligation to share information with i.e. for safeguarding
  • The police or other law enforcement agencies if we have to by law or court order.
  • The Department for Education (DfE), i.e. Ofsted
  • The Consortium of Voluntary Adoption Agencies (CVAA)

Why we share this information

We complete statistical returns to Ofsted and CVAA on an annual basis. This data sharing helps to develop national policies, manage local authority performance, administer and allocate funding and identify and encourage good practice.

We do not share information about our families with anyone without consent unless the law and our policies allow us to do so.

Your rights

Under data protection legislation, parents, carers and children have the right to request access to information about them that we hold. To make a request for your personal information contact deborahp@familyfutures.co.uk or if by post:

Data Protection Lead,

Family Futures CIC,

3 & 4 Floral Place,

7 – 9 Northampton Grove,

Islington,

London

N1 2PL

If you have a concern about the way we are collecting or using your personal data, you should raise your concern with us in the first instance or directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office at https://ico.org.uk/concerns/

The data that we keep about you is your data and we ensure that we keep it confidential and that it is used appropriately. You have the following rights when it comes to your data:

  1. You have the right to request a copy of all of the data we keep about you. Generally, we will not charge for this service;
  2. You have the right to ask us to correct any data we have which you believe to be inaccurate. You can also request that we restrict all processing of your data while we consider your rectification request;
  3. You have the right to request that we erase any of your Personal Data which is no longer necessary for the purpose we originally collected it for. You may also request that we restrict processing if we no longer require your Personal Data for the purpose we originally collected it for, but you do not wish for it to be erased.
  4. You can ask for your data to be erased if we have asked for your consent to process your data. You can withdraw consent at any time – please contact us to do so.
  5. If we are processing your data as part of our legitimate interests as an organisation or in order to complete a task in the public interest, you have the right to object to that processing. We will restrict all processing of this data while we look into your objection.

You may need to provide adequate information for our staff to be able to identify you, for example, a passport or driver’s licence. This is to make sure that data is not shared with the wrong person inappropriately. We will always respond to your request as soon as possible and at the latest within one month.

Contact:

If you would like to discuss anything in this privacy notice, please contact Deborah Prosper, Data Protection Lead, deborahp@familyfutures.co.uk. Telephone: 020 7354 4161.

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