Confidentiality and privacy of staff information
Intent and objectives
The purpose of this policy is to provide RMIT University staff with guidelines regarding the use and access to confidential, private and personal staff information held by the University.
This policy applies to all RMIT University staff including former staff.
The University is committed to maintaining and safeguarding the confidentiality and privacy of personal staff information.
Confidential or private staff information comprises information, in hard copy or electronic form relating to individual staff, held by the University, especially Human Resources.
2. Guiding principles
The University maintains personal staff records for purposes of personnel administration and management. The University has an obligation to:
- protect the legitimate privacy of staff;
- minimise the degree to which record-keeping activities intrude into the privacy of staff;
- ensure that records on staff are collected, maintained, used and disclosed in an appropriate manner;
- provide access and use of private and personal information to staff who require such access to undertake their official duties; and
- take measures to make staff aware of the personal information held, the purpose for which it is held, and how it can be accessed and amended
1. All staff information, on record, is confidential except information which has been placed in the public domain.
Information in the public domain is information, in any form, officially released by the University or already available publicly.
2. Information of a private and personal nature relating to past or present University staff, other than in accordance with this policy, must not be released.
3. The University will release personal information only if the staff member concerned has consented in writing or if the University has a legal obligation to respond to a request, which must be in writing or in the event of an emergency.
4. Guidelines for release of information
4.1 Release to meet legal obligations
Staff information may be released on the authority of the Portfolio HR Manager, Human Resources, to external bodies, to the extent requested, where the requests are made under proper legal authority including for example:
- garnishee order;
- freedom of information (through the Freedom of Information Officer);
- court order;
- health and safety representative;
- executor to an estate;
- government bodies, eg Auditor General, Department of Immigration and Ethnic Affairs
4.2 Release in an emergency
In the event of an accident or emergency, personal details may be released by the Portfolio HR Manager, Human Resources or the appropriate supervisor.
4.3 Release of Information to Staff
Staff are entitled to access information on their own personal records (refer - Staff files policy).
5. Privacy complaints
Complaints relating to breaches of privacy should be made in writing to the Executive Director, Human Resources for investigation and response.[Next: Supporting documents and information ]