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Privacy Notice - Employees

Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council is a registered data controller and we collect and use information personal to you in accordance with data protection legislation.

This document outlines what you can expect from us when you provide us with your personal information during and after your working relationship with us. The term 'processing' describes everything that can be done with your personal information including collection, recording, storage, disclosure, erasure and destruction.

Whist primarily written in the context of employees, this information is also largely applicable to anyone who has a contract to undertake work or services for the Council.

Why are we asking for your information and how will we use the information about you?

We will process your personal information for a wide variety of reasons in connection with employment and contractual obligations, for example: to make sure you get paid and receive any benefits you are entitled to; monitoring and assessing your performance; provision and regulation of holidays and other leave; addressing conduct, disciplinary and grievance issues; performance of day-to-day business activities, etc.

We will ensure that we have a lawful basis to process your personal information. Most commonly, we use one or more of the following legal grounds:

  • the performance of a contract of employment (or services) between us. For example, we need to process your data to pay you and to administer benefits
  • to comply with our legal obligations. For example, to check your entitlement to work in the UK, to deduct tax, to meet health and safety requirements, not to discriminate or dismiss you unfairly
  • where we (or a third party) has a 'legitimate interest'. For example, to monitor the proper use of the Council's IT systems and equipment

We may also use your personal information where:

  • we need to protect your, or someone else's vital interests
  • it is in the public interest or for official purposes

In limited circumstances we may approach you for your consent to allow us to process certain personal information. You have no obligation to give your consent and if you do give consent you may withdraw it at any time.

 

Who will use your information?

Your personal information may be shared within the Council, such as Human Resources, your line or service manager, and ICT staff where access to the data is necessary for the performance of their role and where required by law. We limit access to your personal information to those who have a business need to know and they are subject to a duty of confidentiality.

Your personal information may also be shared with occupational health as part of pre-employment screening, health surveillance, or when referred for an assessment so that advice can be obtained on your fitness for work or to consider adjustments to accommodate a disability or health condition.

We may disclose and exchange information with regulatory bodies such as the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) to prevent fraud or with the Police in relation to the prevention and detection of crime or with other organisations in relation to the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults.

In some instances, we may share your personal information with third party organisations or service providers where there is a lawful basis to do so and we are satisfied that they comply with data protection regulations. For example:

  • Her Majesty Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for tax purposes
  • The Local Government Pension Scheme and the Teachers' Pension Scheme, to fulfil statutory duties and provide Members with benefits
  • Teesside Pension Fund's appointed doctor to determine whether or not Members meet the criteria for ill health retirement
  • other healthcare service providers, for example physiotherapy
  • the Council's salary sacrifice car lease scheme
  • the Disclosure and Barring service in order to obtain background checks, or to refer an employee where we believe he or she has caused harm or poses a future risk of harm to vulnerable groups, including children
  • trade unions for the purposes of collective bargaining, consultation and to administer member subscriptions
  • the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) where there is a concern about a registrant's fitness to practice
  • any person specified by you, where you ask us to provide a reference to that person such as a prospective employer or financial institution
  • other employer organisations where there are shared service or supervision arrangements that you work in connection with
  • legal/professional advisors or with Employer Liability Insurers in the event of any dispute, or to defend or establish a claim on a needs only basis
  • prospective new employers in the context of the transfer of part of our business. For example if the Council decided to set up an arms' length organisation, or in the case of a conversion of a school to an academy, or where employees are transferred to another legal entity

Sometimes, you might provide us with another person's personal information, for example details of your emergency contact or next of kin. If you have given us this information you should inform the individual what personal information of theirs you are giving us. You should also give them our contact details and let them know how to contact us if they have any queries about how we will use their personal information.

 

What personal information do we hold about you?

Much of the information we hold will have been provided by you in the course of starting work at the Council. For example you would have provided information such as your name, address, date of birth and contact details as well as your employment history on the application form.

You will, of course, inevitably be referred to in many documents and records produced by you and your colleagues in the course of carrying out your duties and the business of the Council. Information may come from other internal sources such as your manager, for example performance information recorded in supervision records and appraisal documents, and sickness absence data.

Some of the personal information we hold may have come to us from a third party whom you have given permission for them to share your information with us. E.g. references from previous employers or a recruitment agency.

We may also process "special categories" of more sensitive personal information such as defined in the Data Protection Act:

  • race or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs, and sexual orientation. We may use this type of information for the purpose of equal opportunity monitoring and reporting
  • trade union membership to pay any subscriptions and to comply with our legal obligations in respect of trade union members
  • your health, including any medical condition to assess your fitness for work, to provide appropriate workplace adjustments, to administer benefits and to comply with our legal obligations under employment law
  • we will only collect information about criminal convictions and offences if it is appropriate given the nature of the job role and where we are legally able to do so. Further information can be found in the Disclosure and Barring Services Policy

We will only process such information where we have a lawful basis for doing do.

 

How long will we keep your personal information?

We will only retain your personal information for as long as is necessary to fulfil the purposes we collected it for, including for the purposes of satisfying any legal, accounting, or reporting requirements, and in line with retention guidelines.

 

Requesting access to your personal information

Under data protection legislation, you have the right to request access to your personal information. To make a request for your personal information please contact the Information Governance team. You also have the right to:

  • have any inaccuracies or incomplete personal information corrected
  • request the deletion or removal of personal information where there is no compelling reason for its continued processing
  • restrict our processing of your personal information
  • request a copy of your personal information in a commonly used format so that it can be given to someone-else (data portability)
  • withdraw consent (in the limited circumstances where consent has been given)
  • not be subject to decisions based purely on automated processing where it produces a legal or similarly significant effect on you

If you have a concern about the way we are collecting or using your personal information, we ask that you raise your concern with us in the first instance. For further information about your rights, please visit the Information Commissioner's Office website.

Is your personal information processed overseas?

Your information will not be processed outside the European Union.

 

What security measures are in place to protect your personal information?

The Council takes the security of your personal information seriously and has internal policies and controls in place to ensure that your personal information is not lost, accidentally destroyed, misused or disclosed, and is processed lawfully.

To ensure that employees are aware of their responsibilities in relation processing personal information, the Employee's Guide to Information Governance and Security has been produced.

 

What happens if I don't provide you with my personal information?

If you do not provide us with certain personal information, we may not be able to carry out some elements of the employment contract between us. For example, if you do not provide us with bank account details we would not be able to pay you. It might also stop us from complying with certain legal obligations and duties which we have such as to pay the right amount of tax to HMRC or to make reasonable adjustments in relation to any disability you may have.

The accuracy of the information that we hold about you is important and you should let us know if the information we hold about you changes, for example if you move home or if you change your bank details.

 

How to contact us

Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council's Data Protection Officer is Kate Fulton.

If you have any questions or concerns, or would like more information about how we process your personal information, please contact the Information Governance team in the first instance at foiandcomplaints@stockton.gov.uk or 01642 527521.

If you remain unhappy about the way in which we have handled your personal information or dealt with your concerns, you can contact the Information Commissioner's Office through the Information Commissioner's Office website or by using the following details:

Address: Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF

Telephone: 0303 123 1113 (local rate) or 01625 545 745

Fax: 01625 524 510