Privacy policy.

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Guide Dogs Privacy Statement

Guide Dogs is committed to protecting your privacy. When you interact with us, you are trusting us with your personal information.  We take this responsibility seriously.

This privacy statement sets out Guide Dogs’ approach to the handling of personal information.

We encourage you to check our privacy statement regularly, as this privacy statement may change from time to time.

What is personal information?

Personal information is any information that can be used to personally identify you.

Why we collect personal information

Our mission is to provide Guide Dog and specialist mobility services and resources that will enrich the quality of life of people living with low vision or blindness. To fulfil our mission, we need to collect certain personal information.

The information we collect, and how that information is used, depends on how you interact with us. We may need to collect this information to:

  • send information that has been requested
  • offer and arrange the provision of a service or resources, in line with our mission
  • manage staff, volunteers, and the services they provide, and
  • seek additional support to help fund the services we provide.

Guide Dogs receives minimal government funding, and depends on financial support from the community to provide services. This means it is necessary to contact individuals through a range of fundraising activities.

When you donate to Guide Dogs, we will collect financial information (such as credit card information) in order to receive payment for donations and orders for Guide Dogs products.

Your details are held securely, and are only used for fundraising activities. We understand that there may be times when you are not in a position to make a gift. In this case, you can ask us not to contact you, and we will respect your wish.

We may collect information for statistical purposes about services provided and demographic data (this is optional), so we can tailor the information we provide to our supporters. We may provide statistical information to our sponsors without identifying any individuals.

We may collect information about potential supporters, sponsors or members from information that is publicly available to help us develop our donor, sponsorship and membership programs.

Types of information we collect

We may request a range of information to assist us to fulfil our mission.

This information may include your:

  • name
  • address
  • email
  • telephone number
  • age or birth date
  • profession, occupation or job title
  • details of the products and services you have accessed or enquired about, together with any additional information necessary to deliver those products and services and to respond to your enquiries
  • any additional information that you provide to us directly through our websites or indirectly through use of our websites or online presence, through our representatives or otherwise, and
  • information you provide to us through customer surveys or online contacts.

We may also collect some information that is not personal information, because it does not identify you, or anyone else. For example, we may collect anonymous answers to surveys or information about the use of our website.

We also keep a record of communications and documents that we are required to retain, by law.

Sensitive information

We do not collect any information about racial or ethnic origin, health, political opinions or memberships, religious or philosophical beliefs, trade association or union membership, sexual preferences or criminal record, unless:

  • the person has consented (for example, Police background checks on potential volunteers and staff who will be working with clients, or details required to provide effective service to clients)
  • the collection is required by law
  • the collection is necessary to prevent a serious and imminent threat to the life or health of a person, or
  • the collection is necessary for the establishment, exercise or defence of a legal claim.

Anonymity

If you wish to remain anonymous, or use a pseudonym when dealing with us, we will attempt to fulfil your request.  For example, if you wish to donate anonymously, we can use certain payment mechanisms to facilitate this, such as a bank cheque.

Anonymity may not always be practicable, depending on the nature of your request.

How we collect information

We collect information from a variety of sources, such as when you:

  • make an application to receive a product or service
  • receive a service or follow-up training
  • attend a fundraising event or activity
  • respond to our mailing program or telemarketing call
  • voluntarily provide us with personal information
  • donate to us
  • join a support group
  • become staff members or volunteers of Guide Dogs

Generally, we collect personal information directly from you, unless it is unreasonable or impractical for us to do so. In some cases, we may obtain contact details of potential supporters from third parties.

Disclosing information

Guide Dogs may disclose your personal information to:

  • individuals or organisations, with your consent
  • employees, volunteers, and related bodies corporate
  • contractors, service providers and third parties who provide products or services to Guide Dogs, or, on our behalf (including, information collection, event registration, marketing and fundraising, database management, print and mail, data storage, banking, research and information technology services)
  • professional advisers (such as health care professionals, auditors, accountants, lawyers and business consultants)
  • researchers and research institutions
  • government bodies and regulators (such as WorkCover)
  • insurers, and
  • your representatives.

We work closely with other charities and affiliate Guide Dogs organisations throughout Australia.  We may share your information with these organisations, to request support for our activities and offer products and services that may be of interest to you.  You may opt out from receiving communications from us at any time.

Some of these third party organisations conduct their business overseas, or process information on servers located outside of Australia. As a result, your information may be transferred offshore.

Protection of your personal information

Guide Dogs uses a number of measures to protect your personal information from, misuse, loss, unauthorised access, modification and improper disclosure.  These measures include electronic access controls, premises security and network firewalls. Our data management systems and procedures ensure that personal information is handled in a way that is consistent with our privacy statement.

Your right to access and correct information

We will take all reasonable steps to ensure that your personal information is, accurate, complete, and up to date.
You have the right to access the personal information we hold about you. If the information we hold is not accurate, complete and up to date, you can ask us to modify our records.

However, we are permitted to refuse such requests in certain circumstances, including where:

  • you have not paid our reasonable costs for accessing and copying the information
  • we consider your request to be frivolous or vexatious
  • to do so is likely to prejudice an investigation of possible unlawful activity
  • to do so will be unlawful, or
  • we are otherwise legally entitled to deny your request.

If we refuse your request to either access your personal information, or modify our records, we will provide you with the reasons for our refusal in writing.

Using our website, social pages or contacting us by email

We will only record your e-mail address if you send us a message. It will only be used for the purpose for which it was provided – for example, seeking further information about our services or making a referral for yourself or another individual. It will not be added to a mailing list unless you request that this be done. We will not disclose your email address without consent.

By using our website, and voluntarily providing us with personal information, you consent to the collection, use and disclosure of personal information in the manner described in this privacy statement.

We use Google Analytics to track the effectiveness of our website, including the number of visits, length of visit, viewed pages and the technical capabilities of our visitors. While this data is mostly anonymous, sometimes we will connect it to you, for instance in personalising a webpage, or pre-filling a form with your details. For more information on our analytics tools, read Google’s Privacy Policy.

We also use tools that tell us when a computer or device has visited or accessed our content, which allows us to tailor advertising both on our websites and through advertising networks on other websites based on your visits or behaviour through cookies on your device. You can control how cookies are used by accessing the settings on your chosen browser.

You can also engage with Guide Dogs through social media, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. You can always control how you receive content through each website’s settings. Occasionally, we may get in touch with you via social media if you are not already a follower by using the details on your record, such as your email address. If you prefer we don’t do this, please let us know.

Cookies

We use cookies on our website to allow it to function effectively.

A ‘cookie’ is a small data file that resides on your computer’s hard drive. Some web sites write to this file when you visit them. A cookie file can contain information such as your user ID in order to track the pages you have visited. A cookie cannot access other information from your hard drive, or from cookies created by other web sites. Cookies by themselves cannot be used to find out the identity of any user. The only personal information a cookie can contain, is information you supply. If you do not wish to receive cookies, you may disable these in your web browser, however, please note that doing so may affect our website’s ability to function properly. See the ‘Help’ section of your web browser for more information on changing your cookie preferences.

We may log IP addresses (that is, the electronic addresses of computers connected to the internet) to analyse trends, administer the website, provide relevant content to users, monitor fraudulent activity, and gather broad demographic information.

Complaints

If you are not satisfied with how your personal information has been handled, you may lodge a complaint by using the contact details below. We will endeavour to contact you within 30 days to address your concerns.

If you are not satisfied with how we handle your complaint you may contact the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner.

Contact details

Guide Dogs welcomes your questions and comments on our privacy statement.  If you have any feedback or wish to amend the details we hold about you, please contact our privacy officer using the details outlined below.

Email:
privacy@guidedogs.com.au

Postal Address:
Privacy Officer
2-4 Thomas Street
Chatswood NSW 2067

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