In this Privacy Policy, we describe how we collect, store and use your personal data. In compliance with GDPR all client data is stored securely at Westmeria Counselling Service. Data is stored as both a legal requirement and is used to inform our organisation’s statistical information.  By personal data, we refer to any information that could be used to identify you, such as your name and contact details.

Counselling Clients:

The following is the data we collect for those who enquire about counselling/register with us/or become a client (please note, clinical notes and psychological questionnaires are only taken if you become a client).

  • Your name: we use this to identify you when contacting/addressing you, however, in other circumstances we will use only your initials to ensure confidentiality within our service. 
  • Date of birth: we require this to identify you and in case of referral or emergency circumstance.
  • Your contact number and email address: When you register with us, we require your contact details to contact you about appointments. If you decide not to go ahead with counselling, we will keep your contact details for one year, incase you choose to re-register. You have the right to request that your details are removed from our register. We will ask you at the point of registration if you wish to sign up to our monthly newsletter to keep you informed of our latest news and counselling information, however we will only sign you up if you explicitly choose to opt in. 
  • Address: If we are unable to contact you via telephone or email, we may write to you. Alternatively but rarely, any official medical letters would be sent to you via post.
  • GP surgery: with your knowledge, in a circumstance where necessary for your wellbeing, we may need to contact your GP. 
  • Clinical notes: counsellors are required to keep brief notes, stored securely anonymously within Westmeria Counselling. They are kept to a minimum and are destroyed after 3 years. 
  • Psychological questionnaires: as a client, you will be asked by your counsellor to fill out a questionnaire at regular intervals throughout your counselling. This enables us to evaluate the effectiveness of our work and for you and the counsellor to assess together how sessions are progressing. This is kept anonymously and we use this data to inform our statistics. 

We do not share client information with any third party. Confidentiality is an essential part of our work and your information is stored securely and professionally. We do not share our database with any other organisation.

Counselling students:

The following is the data we collect for those who apply to our counselling courses/become a student. 

  • Your name and contact details: for anybody making a course enquiry, we collect this information to identify you and to contact you in regards to the course. If you choose to not go ahead on a course, we will ask your explicit permission to store your contact details to contact you in regards to future courses. You have the right to request that we destroy your information and not contact you. 
  • Your application form: if you formally apply for our course, we will require the above details on our application form, as well as information such as your date of birth, ethnicity, emergency contact details etc. This informs our student information to ensure your safety and wellbeing and to ensure equal opportunities within our organisation.  
  • Declaration of health form: due to the psychological and emotional challenges of our courses, we require confirmation that you are not in a serious state of psychological difficulty when taking our course. We will ask you to fill out a declaration of health for this purpose to ensure your wellbeing. 
  • Your CV/cover letter and references: when you apply for a placement with us, or in some circumstances for our courses, we may require this information to inform your application process. This information is destroyed once you are no longer a student with us. 
  • Information shared: we take the confidentiality of your information very seriously. We will only, with your knowledge communicate with professional bodies such as BACP and CPCAB about your student information. As our courses are CPCAB accredited, we must register your details with them as a candidate.

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