Privacy Statement

The following statement has been made in compliance with the General Data Protection Register May 2018 (GDPR: https://ico.org.uk) it is subject to change and updates.

I am freelance counsellor and I will request information about you that enables me to carry out my practice in a professional manner. You have a right to know how I store the information and processed.

Record and Note Keeping

After the initial enquiry and telephone call, if we can proceed, I will send you: Information About Online Counselling, a copy of this Privacy Policy to sign, and another form Important Information About You. I will send these to you via an encrypted email.

If an initial session which will include an assessment, is arranged, we will do this via the telephone or online, using Zoom. I collect personal information about you in our initial session with your consent, to help understand the nature of the problem you are bringing. In addition to this, once we begin our sessions, I take minimal case notes for my own reference and to purposely think through your difficulties and guide you through the counselling process. They remain anonymous and are kept securely in a locked metal box in my home. I retain this information for 5 years unless it is requested by you that I destroy them prior to this time limit. None of my notes are stored electronically although text messages and emails are kept on password protected devices. These are deleted when the message has been read or replied to.

If you decide not to proceed with me after the initial session, please let me know. The assessment form will then be securely destroyed. If your start is delayed I will keep the form for 2 months after which it is then destroyed. Should you wish to approach me for counselling after the 2 month period, the initial assessment would need to be repeated.

I am registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for the storage of personal information. If you have any concerns about my management of storage of personal information you are able to complain directly to the ICO at the website address above. In the event of a breach of personal information I will contact yourself, the ICO and BACP within 72 hours. You have the right to request the details of any information I hold on you and this information will be provided by me in an easily accessible format within one month in accordance with the ICO guidelines.

Whilst working with you I need to keep information to fulfil my contractual commitment to you. I also have a legitimate interest to keep information for up to 5 years in relation to client information that might be needed by a court of law.

Online Security

I want to make sure that your data is protected to prevent unauthorised access by a potential hacker. The email provider I use is end to end encrypted to ensure emails are sent safely and securely. I strongly advise you to check that your Wi-Fi is secure, ensure your devices are password protected and not left where other people can access them. I strongly advise that you use a personal computer and/or email account and that your device has anti-virus software, firewall protection and encryption. I strongly advise you to use a private Wi-Fi connection and not a public one. I cannot be held responsible for any security breaches outside my control. For video counselling I use the platform Zoom because this is encrypted and supported by my professional bodies. Telephone counselling sessions are conducted from a private and confidential environment that ensures we are not overheard.

What Are Your Rights?

You have the right to see the information I keep. You have the right to ask that your data be destroyed, however, should you withdraw consent I will keep minimum details that identify you for 5 years and erase all other information. You have the right to ask that your data be transferred to other services. You have the right to restrict processing where the data is inaccurate, the processing is unlawful or I no longer need the information. I will never use your client data for marketing.

Your Consent and My Contractual Rights

By signing this form, you are giving consent to me collecting your data. At the end of counselling you have a further opportunity to withdraw consent to keep your data. Should you decide to withdraw your consent at this stage I will have a legal and legitimate interest to keep records that identify you should there be a case brought in a court and will keep minimum data in order to do this.

By signing this Privacy Statement I give my consent to One Step At A Time counselling to collect my personal and sensitive data. I understand Jean Delevingne may contact my GP or other relevant professionals but whenever possible this will be discussed with me first. I understand that Jean Delevingne will keep my information for 5 years and that I have the right to withdraw my consent at any time therefore minimising the information that is kept.

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