We are 1800RESPECT, the National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service which forms part of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022 (Service).
The Service is delivered by Medibank Health Solutions Telehealth Pty Limited ABN 40 069 396 792 (MHS), a subsidiary of Medibank Private Limited, on behalf of the Commonwealth of Australia through the Department of Social Services. In this privacy statement, references to 'us', 'we' and 'our' include the Department of Social Services, MHS and any other contractors and service providers engaged in delivering the Service.
This privacy statement applies to all individuals whose personal information we may collect in the course of providing the Service. This includes the people who contact us because they experience the impacts of sexual assault, domestic or family violence, family and friends affected by violence or abuse, and the frontline workers and professionals who use our resources to support people experiencing violence and abuse.
We are committed to protecting your privacy. You may use the Service anonymously or by using a pseudonym (that is, a fake name). However, it may not always be possible to provide you with all aspects of the Service anonymously or through using a pseudonym.
Where you provide us with personal information (that is, information about you or another person where you or that other person is identifiable) or where you have authorised another person to provide us with personal information, this information will be handled carefully and will be collected, used, stored and disclosed in a manner consistent with the Privacy Act 1988.
We collect and use personal information to enable us to provide the Service and to meet our legal obligations. For example, we may use your personal information (where you choose to provide it) to provide you with online or telephone counselling services or to respond to your queries and feedback.
If you are a frontline worker or professional who supports people experiencing violence and abuse, we may use your personal information to:
We may use de-identified information (where no one is identifiable) to improve the 1800RESPECT service, for reports and in evaluation of the Service and its various elements. De-identified information can also be used in academic articles and presentations at conferences.
We record calls made to the Service for quality assurance and training purposes. You can choose not to have your call recorded.
If you contact us online via the ‘chat’ option, we keep a transcript or record of the chat interaction to help us improve our service. If you don’t want a transcript to be kept, you can tell the counsellor who interacts with you online.
We keep personal information only for as long as it is required in order to provide you with the Service and to comply with our legal obligations. When it is no longer needed for these purposes, we take reasonable steps to destroy or permanently de-identify it.
Any personal information held by MHS or its contractors and service providers in connection with the Service is held on behalf of the Department of Social Services, so that we can provide the Service. If MHS stops providing the Service on behalf of the Department of Social Services, and the Department of Social Services requests, we will transfer the information to the Department of Social Services or to such contractors as the Department of Social Services appoints to perform the Service.
The information may be shared between MHS, the Department of Social Services and with contractors and service providers engaged to provide the Service (collectively, Contracted Service Providers). Where Contracted Service Providers are engaged, they are bound by obligations of security and confidentiality and contractual measures are in place to ensure they comply with those obligations.
We may disclose personal information to other persons where required to do so by law, such as to comply with mandatory reporting requirements in relation to suspected cases of child abuse and neglect. If we are issued with a subpoena requiring disclosure of personal information, we take reasonable steps to ascertain whether disclosure might result in further harm or distress to those experiencing violence and abuse and, if so, we use all reasonable endeavours to object to the disclosure on any legal grounds available to us.
De-identified information (where no one is identifiable) may also be shared with research partners.
We try to make sure that the personal information we collect, use and disclose is accurate, complete, up-to-date and relevant. You can request to access or correct personal information we hold about you. We will generally provide you with access to your personal information if practicable and will take reasonable steps to amend any personal information about you which is inaccurate or out of date. You can contact us by using the Contact Us page.
Our respective Privacy Policies contain more information about our privacy practices, including how you may request access to, or correction of, personal information we hold about you, how you can lodge a privacy complaint and how we manage such complaints. Whether your personal information has been collected by one of the below organisations will depend on which service you have used. If you would like more information, please contact us by using the using the Contact Us page.
You can obtain the latest version of our Privacy Policies by visiting our websites below:
This Privacy Statement is current as at February 2018 and may be updated from time to time.
Please consult this page regularly for any changes to the Privacy Statement.