City of Victoria Corporate Privacy Guide
Effective April 13, 2018
The City of Victoria offers a wide range of services to the public. These include parks and recreation, land development, fire and emergency response, roads and sewers, water, garbage and recycling, bylaw enforcement and animal control. To deliver these services the City needs to collect, use and disclose many kinds of personal information. The City also needs personal information in order to improve these services and to better understand what other services its residents and businesses need.
The City values the privacy of individuals who interact with it. This policy explains how the City collects, uses and discloses personal information, and it protects personal information. This policy gives examples of what personal information the City needs, and examples of how it uses and discloses personal information. Of course, the City’s services, activities and programs change over times, so this policy therefore will be updated over time to reflect changes.
This policy applies to personal information that the City collects, uses or discloses in any form (including verbal, electronic or written personal information).
This policy does not apply to any collection, use or disclosure of personal information through the City’s website. The City’s website privacy statements apply to that. The external website statement for the public can be accessed by following this link [http://www.victoria.ca/EN/footer/privacy-statement.html]
This policy does not apply to the Victoria Police Department or the Greater Victoria Public Library. These are separate public bodies under the Act.
The Act and the regulations under it prevail over this policy.
This policy does not create any legal rights, benefits, duties, obligations or requirements of any kind.
The following definitions are used in this policy:
(a) “Act” means the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (British Columbia);
(b) “City” means the City of Victoria;
(c) “employee” means an employee of the City, including a volunteer;
(d) “personal information” means recorded information about an identifiable individual;
(e) “service provider” means a person we retain under a contract to perform services for us;
(f) “us” refers to the City, as do “our”, “we” and similar terms, not to any employees or elected or appointed City officials;
(g) “you” refers to anyone whose personal information we collect, use or disclose.
The City’s City Manager is responsible for administration of this policy. He or she may ask others to help implement this policy and help us comply with the Act. Please see below for contact information if you have any questions, need information or would like to complain about a privacy matter.
We are also accountable for complying with the Act through investigations, audits or inquiries conducted by the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia.
OUR COLLECTION OF YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
We collect personal information:
1. where collection is authorized under a statute, which may include the Community Charter, or is authorized under City bylaws;
2. for the purposes of our activities, services and activities;
3. for the purposes of planning or evaluating our services, programs and activities; [We may, for example, collect personal information through surveys and open house sessions to help evaluate our services];
4. for law enforcement purposes, including enforcing our bylaws;
5. at presentations, ceremonies, performances, sports meets, or similar events, that are open to the public and where you voluntarily appear.
When we collect your personal information we will tell you, verbally or in writing, why we are collecting it and our authority for collecting it. We will also give you the title, business address and telephone number of an employee who can answer your questions about the collection.
We will collect your personal information directly from you, but we may also collect it from other sources:
6. we may collect your personal information from another source if you have consented to our doing that.
7. we may collect your personal information from other another source in these cases:
a. another law allows us to do so;
b. for law enforcement, for a court proceeding, to collect a debt or fine from you, or to make a payment to you;
c. where your personal information is necessary for us to deliver, or evaluate, a common or integrated program or activity;
d. where your personal information is necessary to establish, manage or terminate an employment relationship between you and us;
e. if your personal information may be disclosed to the City under Part 3 of the Act;
f. where we collect your personal information for the purpose of determining your suitability for an honour or award.
OUR USE AND DISCLOSURE OF YOUR INFORMATION
We will use and disclose your personal information only for the purpose we collected it for or for a purpose that is consistent with why we collected it in the first place. We may also use or disclose your personal information for another purpose if you have identified the information and consented to our other use. Last, we may use your personal information for a purpose for which it can be disclosed to us under Part 3 of the Act.
We may also disclose your personal information:
1. if you have identified the information and consented in writing to its disclosure;
2. to our employees or service providers if the information is necessary for their duties, for delivery of a common or integrated program or activity, or for planning or evaluating a City program or activity;
3. if your personal information is made publicly available in British Columbia by a law that authorizes or requires it to be made public;
4. to a public body or law enforcement agency to assist in a specific investigation or law enforcement proceeding;
5. to your union representative who is making an inquiry, but only if you have given the representative written authority to make the inquiry;
6. to our legal counsel for the purpose of legal advice or for use in legal proceedings involving us;
7. to your Member of the Legislative Assembly if you have asked her or him to help resolve a problem;
8. as otherwise permitted under Part 3 of the Act.
Please note that all information provided at open meetings of Council or its committees is considered to be public. If you provide or disclose your personal information to us for that purpose, you are consenting to that information being available to the public, including through posting on our website. This information is considered to be a part of the public record and cannot be removed or changed. However, if you satisfy us in advance that you have legitimate personal safety concerns for yourself or an immediate family member, we may allow you to submit your personal information to Council or a committee in confidence. We will not make it publicly available in that case, although we will keep it in our Legislative Services offices, as part of the record.
RETENTION OF PERSONAL INFORMATION
If we use your personal information to make a decision that directly affects you, we will keep it for at least one year after we make our decision. We also keep personal information in accordance with our relevant records retention schedules. We use reasonable efforts to ensure that your personal information is destroyed securely when the time comes under our records retention schedules.
MEASURES TO KEEP YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION SECURE
Your privacy matters to us, so we use what we believe are reasonable security arrangements to protect your personal information against such risks as unauthorized access, collection, use and disclosure. These arrangements may include information technology measures, as well as policies and practices, to protect your personal information.
If we disclose your personal information to our service provider, we will make reasonable efforts to impose contractual protections on the service provider. Those protections vary according to the nature and sensitivity of the personal information involved. We require our service providers not to use or disclose personal information other than for the purpose of performing services for us.
All employees are required to respect the confidentiality of personal information they receive or compile and are required to use and disclose it only in accordance with this policy and the Act.
ACCURACY OF PERSONAL INFORMATION
We make a reasonable effort to ensure that personal information we use to make a decision directly affecting you is accurate and complete.
CORRECTION OF PERSONAL INFORMATION
If you believe there is an error in your personal information that we have, or that your personal information, you can ask us to correct what we have. Your correction request has to be in writing. You have to give us reasons why you believe the correction is reasonable. If we are satisfied that your request is reasonable, we will correct your information as soon as reasonably possible. If we decide not to correct your information, we will note your requested change on the information. We will also note why we did not correct your information as you asked. As already suggested, this paragraph applies only to personal information that is in our custody. It also only applies to factual errors or omissions, not opinions or evaluations about you.
ACCESS TO YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
You can ask us to give you a copy of your personal information that is in our custody or control.
To do this you have to contact us in writing, at the contact address found below.
If you are an employee and would like a copy of your own employee personal information, you have to do that through our Human Resources department.
If we believe your request may involve someone else’s personal information, or information protected under the Act, we may require you to make a formal request under the Act for access to records. The Act gives us 30 business days to respond to a formal request, starting on the date your request is received. (The Act also allows that time to be extended.) Please note that in some cases the Act may require us to refuse you access to even your own personal information. We will give you written reasons for every decision on a formal request.
Before disclosing your personal information, we will require you to verify your identity, so we can be
assured that you are the individual whose information is being requested. This helps ensure we do not disclose your personal information to someone we should not give it to.
WHAT HAPPENS IF THERE’S A PRIVACY BREACH?
Sometimes even the most careful measures cannot protect all personal information all of the time. If we discover a privacy breach, which means unauthorized collection, use, access to or disclosure of personal information, our privacy breach policy will be activated. Please refer to that policy for more information.
HOW YOU CAN COMPLAIN
Any complaint about any privacy-related matter under this policy or under the Act must be made to us writing. It has to be mailed or delivered to us at City Hall (see below) or by email, to: email@example.com
We will consider your complaint, including about a breach of your privacy, and will disclose the outcome to you in writing. We expect you to co-operate reasonably and in a timely way with our work, including by promptly providing us with information that we might reasonably need to do our work.
You can seek advice or information from the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia. You can also make a written formal complaint to that Office, although we encourage you to use our complaint procedure first. Wherever we can, we try to work things out directly with people, to their satisfaction.
We have other privacy-related polices and resources. You can find these on our website by contacting us using the contact information found below.
This Policy should be reviewed every five years
Here is the contact information for the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner:
PO Box 9038
Stn Prov Govt
Victoria BC V8W 9A4
947 Fort Street
Victoria BC V8V 3K3
OUR CONTACT INFORMATION
If you have any questions about this policy or your personal information please contact Legislative Services at 250.361.0571 or by email at LegislativeServices@victoria.ca or Human Resources at 250.361.0232 or Hr@victoria.ca