The Board of Directors recognises that it has a primary duty to protect the confidentiality of information obtained through carrying out its functions about individuals and groups. Circumstances may arise where this primary duty is superseded by legal duties of disclosure of information.
Duty of Confidentiality
The Board of Directors will endeavour to ensure that individual Directors and participating volunteers, such as volunteer drivers, will respect the rights to privacy of individuals and groups involved with CCT. This duty of confidentiality concerns all personal information, whether medical, criminal and social, unless such information is already in the public domain.
Duties under the Data Protection Act 1998
This act came into force on 1st March 2000. It regulates the collection and use of personal information and allows individuals access to personal information that CCT holds about them. The Act seeks to ensure that all organisations that use information about individuals, do so in accordance with specified principles so as to protect the civil liberties of the person who is the data subject.
The Board of Directors will follow the guidelines on the Data Protection Act 1998 provided by the Charity Commission.
Duty of Disclosure
The Board of Directors recognises that there are circumstances that may make it necessary to disclose confidential information. This duty of “qualifying disclosure” is described in the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998, and applies to all members of CCT.
Duties under the Public Disclosure Act 1998
The Act makes special provision for charities. If a person has concerns about the administration of CCT, including matters to do with funding, then those concerns may be disclosed to the Charity Commission in its role as the Regulatory Body and “prescribed persons”.
Other disclosures are protected under the Act, but must relate to the following matters to “qualify” for such protection (whether happening now or in the past):
- A criminal offence
- The breach of a legal obligation
- A miscarriage of justice
- A danger to the health & safety of any individual
- Damage to the environment
- Deliberate concealment of information tending to show any of the above.
A qualifying disclosure to the Charity Commission will be a “protected disclosure” provided the person:
- Makes the disclosure in good faith
- Reasonably believes that the relevant failure relates to the proper administration of CCT
- Reasonably believes that the information disclosed and any allegations contained in it are substantially true.
- Advice from the Charity Commission on how to report a concern is available on their web site.