Privacy Policy

Privacy Statement

SPRC recognizes the responsibility to treat the collection, storage, and removal of personal information with the utmost of care to protect the privacy of employees, volunteers and community stakeholders. SPRC is committed to respecting privacy and protecting personal information.

Policy

This policy addresses personal information that is collected and handled by the SPRC and refers to identifiable information about an individual, excluding business contact information.  The policy outlines how SPRC handles personal information.

Personal information is defined as information about an individual whether recorded or not.  Examples include but are not limited to: name, home address, personal telephone numbers, financial information, Social Insurance Number, driver’s license.  Personal information does not include the name, title, business address or business telephone number of an employee of an organization.

Purpose

The purpose of this policy and procedure is to provide clear guidelines for the handling of personal information to reduce risk of security breaches and inappropriate use of confidential information and to outline management and staff responsibilities.

Procedure

Purpose for Collection, Use and Disclosure of Personal Information

The purpose for which the SPRC collects personal information will be identified prior to or at the time information is collected.  Personal information may be collected for the purposes of:

  • Employment
  • Volunteer participation
  • Board selection and participation
  • Research
  • Providing program delivery
  • Administering membership and providing membership services
  • Providing communication to members and other stakeholders

The type of information we collect and how we use that information depends on your relationship to the Social Planning and Research Council (SPRC).  All information we collect has a specific purpose to our work.  We do not share your information with third parties without your explicit consent unless required by law.

If you are participating in an evaluation or study

SPRC may collect personal information, opinions, preferences and other data to support the goals of a project.  This information is used in the aggregate—that is, it is combined with the information of other participants.  Your information and opinions will remain anonymous.  Participant quotes may be used which have been de-identified. Specific details of how your information is used vary depending on the project.  Those details will be explained to you at that time of seeking your consent to participate in such a project.

If you are a member, volunteer, or donor

SPRC may collect your name, address and other relevant identifying personal information.  This information is collected so that we may issue charitable tax receipts and acknowledge donations, share our newsletter or events and activities that may be of an interest, and to support future fundraising.

If you are a staff member, volunteer, or consultant

We may collect personal identifying information such as name, address, Social Insurance Number, evidence of education, certifications, Vulnerable Sector Screening, and criminal record check information.  SPRC does not release this personnel information to third parties without your consent, save and except that information that is required by company insurance, benefits, and pension programs, funding organizations, Revenue Canada or as required by law.

If you are a client

SPRC has different types of clients.  The type of information and how that information will be used will be outlined in our contractual agreements, letters of understanding or information provided to clients outlining our services.  That information is subject to the same protection and standards of all other personal information that we collect.

Limitations of Use and Disclosure

The SPRC will only use personal information for the purpose for which it was collected and should SPRC require the use of personal information for a new purpose, consent will be sought for that new use.  SPRC will not use personal information collected for illegal purposes.

Personal information will not be disclosed to third parties without an individual’s knowledge and consent, unless permitted or required by law.  Consent may be provided in writing or through verbal consent.

Personal information will be retained only as long as necessary to fulfill its purposes for which it was collected and to maintain legal, fiduciary and contractual responsibilities.

SPRC does not sell or trade personal information with third parties. Information may be transferred to third parties where information processing is outsourced for administrative purposes.  Examples may include but are not limited to: the use of a contact database system, mailing service or survey software.  Service providers are restricted from using or disclosing personal or confidential information transferred to them for any purpose other than the provision of services to SPRC and will indicate knowledge and acceptance of this policy in writing or through their stated terms of agreement.

Accuracy

In order to keep record up to date and accurate and in some instances, compliance with operating procedures, personal information will be updated as needed.  If an individual’s personal information should change, we encourage individuals to notify SPRC of the resulting changes.  Requests to update information can be made by calling SPRC offices or emailing sprc@sprc.hamilton.on.ca

Retention

The SPRC retains personal information only as long as it is needed.

Disposal

SPRC will dispose of personal information by destroying it in a secure manner.

Information Collected from our website(s)

When individuals visit our websites, limited information is automatically collected and downloaded to host servers for traffic monitoring and statistical purposes.  The information is used to record trends in usage and improve site functionality.  Individuals are not identified through this collection of data. The following information is collected:

  • User’s Internet Protocol (IP) address used to access our websites
  • Operating systems used
  • ISP used to visit our websites
  • Dates and time of visitors
  • Pages viewed and time spent on each page
  • Information downloaded from our websites
  • Keywords used to access our websites

Analytics

In order to provide you with an optimal browsing experience, our websites use web analytics to help analyze the use of our websites.  These tools use cookies to collect information about visits to our sites, which we use to improve the experience of our site visitors.

Users agree that the use of materials from SPRC websites, providing personal information through the websites or posting to SPRC websites or social media channels, constitutes an understanding and agreement with the terms of this privacy policy and its content.  This policy is subject to change and individuals are encouraged to review this policy from time to time.

Individuals who choose not to use the Internet to provide personal information may contact the SPRC by telephone, by mail or where applicable, in person.  Not all options may be available.

Links to Outside Websites

Where the SPRC provides links to outside websites, SPRC is not responsible for the privacy practices of other websites.  Individuals are encouraged to review the privacy policies of each web site they visit.

Credit Cards

Credit card numbers used to provide services will be used for payment processing only and will not be retained, given or sold to third party service providers.  If payments are collected through the SPRC website, websites will have a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) software to encrypt personal information used during transmissions.

Safeguards

The SPRC employs a number of safeguards to protect the privacy of its members, partners, stakeholders, employees, volunteers, website visitors and internet users. Such safeguards include physical measures such as using locked filing cabinets.  Electronic safeguards include: the use of computer and file passwords, encryption, firewalls, intrusion detection and restricted access to computers. All SPRC staff and volunteers sign confidentiality agreements.

We recognize that despite our best efforts, use of the internet to transmit data is not 100% secure and SPRC cannot guarantee the absolute security of personal data.  Internally, access to personal information is restricted to employees who require access to the information to do their jobs and as such is on a “need to know” basis.

Procedures for safeguarding personal information is communicated to all employees to ensure compliance with this policy.

Breach of Privacy

SPRC is committed to safeguarding individuals’ private information; however, in the unfortunate circumstance of a privacy breach, will notify internal stakeholders (employees, board members, volunteers) as well as external stakeholders (funders, membership, mailing lists).  Notification may also include contacting the public through media channels as appropriate. Individuals will be provided with information pertaining to the nature of the breach, expected cause and mitigating actions to address the breach.

Access to Information

Individuals have the right to update information they have on file with the SPRC and may do so by emailing sprc@sprc.hamilton.on.ca , via postal mail, in person at one of our offices, or by phone.

Compliance Concerns

Individuals with concerns regarding this privacy policy may contact the Executive Director in writing, by phone or by email:

Kim Martin, Executive Director

Social Planning and Research Council of Hamilton;

350 King Street East, Unit 104

Hamilton Ontario L8N 3Y3

Telephone: 905 522-1148 Ext. 103

Email: kmartin@sprc.hamilton.on.ca

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