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Children in need and looked after children privacy notice

Who will own my data once I submit it?

We will own your data once it has been submitted.

Why do you need my information?

When a child or young person needs to access any of our children in need and children looked after support services, we collect their personal information in order for us to deliver a range of services to them to facilitate their direct care.

The type of information we collect may include:

  • 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)
  • episodes of being looked after (such as important dates, information on placements)
  • outcomes for looked after children (such as whether health and dental assessments are up to date, strengths and difficulties questionnaire scores and offending)
  • adoptions (such as dates of key court orders and decisions)
  • care leavers (such as their activity and what type of accommodation they have).

We use this personal data to:

  • support children and monitor their progress
  • provide them with pastoral care
  • assess the quality of our services
  • evaluate and improve our policies on children’s social care.

What allows you to use my information?

We collect and process information  about children in our care and children to whom we provide services as part of our duties, powers and responsibilities as a public authority under Article 6, part e of the General Data Protection Regulation and Article 9, Part h, the provision of health and social care. 

The legislation, policies and guidance that relates to children in care in the UK includes but is not limited to:

Who will my information be shared with?

When a parent or carer in receipts of benefits has a child taken into care we need to inform the Department of Work and Pensions as part of our  part of our duties, powers and responsibilities as a public authority under Article 6, part e of the General Data Protection Regulation.

When we share your information between ourselves and the DWP, we will only do this to aid the prevention of fraud, when doing so we rely on the following legislation:

We also share children in need and children looked after data with the Department for Education on a statutory basis, under:

This data sharing helps to develop national policies, manage local authority performance, administer and allocate funding and identify and encourage good practice.

When we share information with other public authorities we do so as part of our duties, powers and responsibilities as a public authority under Article 6, part e of the General Data Protection Regulation in order for us to safeguard and promote the welfare of children as outlined under section 10 and 11 of the Children Act 2004.

We do not share information about our children in need or children looked after with anyone without explicit consent unless doing so in order to perform a public task, the legislation or our policies allow us to do so.

Do I have to provide this information and what will happen if I don’t?

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.

When a child is received into the care of the Local Authority it is either due to:

  • parental agreement/request (so the parents volunteer their basic details)
  • safeguarding concerns (so agencies can share information about the family without their consent)

If we need to use your information for research or reports, your information will be anonymised and any information taken from notes (hand written or typed) during any consultation sessions will be securely destroyed. The information will continue to be used in a summarised and anonymised form in any research reports or papers that are published. The anonymised information in the papers may be of historic interest and may be held in public archives indefinitely.

How long will you keep this data for and why?

We will only use your personal information whilst delivering the service to you and to deal with any questions or complaints that we may receive about this. In practice, this means that your information will be deleted seven years after we stop using it where a service has been provided unless the law requires us to keep it for a longer period:

  • looked after children – 75 years then destroyed
  • children in need – 25 years then destroyed

If we need to use your information for research or reports, your information will be anonymised and any information taken from notes (hand written or typed) during any consultation sessions will be securely destroyed. The information will continue to be used in a summarised and anonymised form in any research reports or papers that are published. The anonymised information in the papers may be of historic interest and may be held in public archives indefinitely.

How will my information be stored?

Your information will be stored on secure electronic data systems held by children's services and the Department of Work and Pensions.

What rights do I have when it comes to my data?

Under data protection legislation, you have the right to request access to the information that we hold about you. In certain circumstances you also have the right to:

  • object to processing of personal data that is likely to cause, or is causing, damage or distress
  • prevent processing for the purpose of direct marketing
  • object to decisions being taken by automated means
  • have inaccurate personal data rectified, blocked, erased or destroyed.

We will only hold your personal information for as long as necessary for business purposes or if we are required to keep it by law.

To make a request follow the instructions on our Data protection for you page.

Who can I complain to if I am unhappy about how my data is used?

You can complain directly to our Data Protection team online or by post.

  • Online: Contact the DPO
  • By post: Data Protection Officer, HQ, Nicholas Street, Chester, CH1 2NP

You also have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office using the following details:

Will this information be used to take automated decisions about me?

No.

Will my data be transferred abroad and why?

No.

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