I think it’s very important to develop trust in the counselling relationship so you feel like you can talk about whatever you need to in order to progress. I recognise and know from personal experience that it can take time to develop trust, and for it to deepen over time. Confidentiality and privacy is a really important part of that trust.
If we were to start working together then it would be important for you to read by privacy statement in full and sign a consent form, both for your protection and my own. Your privacy and the confidentiality of what you share with me is extremely important to me. You can be confident that your personal information - your data - will be kept safely and securely and will only be used for the purpose for which it was given to me. I adhere to current data protection legislation, including the General Data Protection Regulation (the GDPR).
I am registered with the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) (registered number ZB494959). You have the right to ask me to delete your data at any time but my legal/ethical obligations might restrict what I can delete. If you have any queries about this privacy notice or about any aspect of your data you can contact me at email@example.com, or by phone 07514 771 478 or in person, or write to me. Please contact me for a postal address.
The law states that I must have a legal reason for processing your data. For the purposes of providing counselling or to discuss starting to provide counselling then the legal reasons I have are that I need certain information to provide this counselling safely, ethically and legally to carry out the counselling agreement between us.
When you first approach me for counselling I collect a small amount of information so that I can reply to your enquiry. If we do not start working together, and if you do not ask to be put on a waiting list, then I will delete this information within one month. If we begin counselling then I will collect additional information so that I can provide counselling safely, ethically and legally. As part of this I will write notes on each of our sessions and this is an ethical and legal requirement. Everything we discuss is confidential except in three specific situations:
In these cases I will strive to discuss them with you first so we decide together how to proceed, but it may not always be possible to do this, especially in a safeguarding situation.
Your data is stored digitally in the cloud with a high level of security involving multiple passwords which only I know. The records of our sessions are not stored with your name so in the unlikely event that someone were able to gain access to them, they would not be able to match them with you. After our counselling work has finished I will delete some information, but other information (for example, my counselling records) will be securely held for three years as an ethical and legal requirement.
There are a couple of things that you should know when using this website. Firstly, in common with many websites, my web hosting provider records your IP address when you visit this website. This potentially may reveal your identity.