Empowering Communities recognises the importance of the correct and lawful treatment of personal data. This privacy notice tells you what to expect when Empowering Communities collects personal data. It applies to information we collect about:

  • Visitors to our website
  • People who use our services
  • Job applicants
  • Current and former employees

Visitors to our website

We collect information about your visits to our website, this may include your IP address, operating system, browser type and general location. To help us gather this information we use cookies; small files stored on the hard drive of your computer. Cookies allow us to improve our site and deliver a better service.

Browser Cookies: We track visits with a browser cookie that expires after 30 minutes.  

We also track Unique Visitors which is an estimate of the total number of actual visitors that come to our site. We track this number with a browser cookie created when someone first visits our site. This cookie lasts for two years.

The Activity Log: This is a searchable list of every time a visitor accessed a URL (a page or post) on our site for the past seven days and includes information such as the user’s IP address, Referrer, Browser version and Operating system.

Google Analytics cookies: We also use Google Analytics, a popular web analytics service provided by Google Inc.  Google uses cookies to collect and analyse information about how the website is used. This cookie lasts for 28 days.  Google undertakes not to associate your IP address with other data held by Google. Find out more about Google Analytics here.

People who use our services

We offer various services to help support the development and implementation of effective Tenant Participation practices. We hold personal data usually in the form of contact details (such as names, telephone numbers, e-mail addresses and/or postal addresses) in order to carry out the agreed service/contract of work. Holding the contact details allows us to communicate with those who have requested our services and it is therefore likely that these will be shared internally to allow for same. They will not be shared externally without your prior consent. We will securely dispose of your data when it is no longer required, or you request us to do so. 

In addition to the above, we will sometimes request individuals to identify their gender and/or age. This data is only used for statistical analysis as it allows us to statistically report (in a way that does not identify individuals) on, for example, the attendance of training courses.

Job Applicants

Information gathered through the Job Application process is collected via:

1.    The Job Application form

This will be used to progress your application for the post you have applied for based on the potential of a contract of employment. Application forms are shared internally with the shortlisting/interviewing panel (and if successful the payroll administrator who uploads them to a personnel file held electronically on the Payroll software). As an Equal Opportunities employer registered with the Equality Commission, we hold unsuccessful application forms for 1 year and successful applications are held for the course of employment.

2.    An Equal Opportunities Monitoring form

As an equal opportunities employer registered with the Equality Commission, you will be asked to complete a monitoring form to provide us with information that aids our equal opportunities monitoring. This is not mandatory, however, completed forms will be used to fulfil the legal/regulatory requirements set out by the Equality Commission. Information you provide to us in this way will only be available internally to the Monitoring Officer at Empowering Communities. Any information you provide will only be used to produce and monitor equal opportunities statistics.  Monitoring Forms are held for 3 years from date of application for unsuccessful applicants and 3 years from the date an employee leaves us.

Current and former employees

We hold various other forms of records on current employees such as Terms & Conditions of Employment, Annual Leave/Sickness records, notifications received from HMRC and expense claims. These are held as part of the employer/employee contract for the purpose of employee administration, i.e. to process and make salary payments and for the administration of the organisation’s occupational pension scheme. We only ever request the minimum data required to fulfil the specified purpose for which it was intended. For processing purposes specified above, data will be shared with our bank and pension provider for administration purposes. Internally it will be shared with the administration staff who require it for processing and the Corporate, Finance and Governance Manager.

Our Data Retention Policy will be provided to employees upon induction.

How we store your data

The data you provide to us, whether in electronic or physical form, is stored securely. If in electronic form, this is held securely in the Cloud. If in manual form, then data will be stored securely in locked filing cabinets and/or offices with access restricted appropriately. 

Your rights

As an individual, under the Data Protection Act 1998 and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) you have rights in relation to how we process your personal information. Some of your rights include the right to have inaccuracies corrected, the right to have information erased, the right to prevent direct marketing and the right to access certain personal information being kept about you. This is called a Subject access request.

To find out more about your rights please visit the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) Website.

Complaints or queries

This Privacy Notice has been drafted to outline how we handle and process personal information. It does not provide exhaustive detail of all aspects of such however, we are happy to provide you with appropriate additional information/explanation on request. 

To request such, please contact us at the address below.

If you think there is a problem with the way we are handling your personal information, you have a right to make a complaint to a supervisory authority such as the ICO. Check their website for further details.

Access to personal information/How to contact us

If you have any queries or would like to exercise the right to access the personal information that Empowering Communities holds about you, you should apply in writing to Empowering Communities, 34-36 Henry Street, Ballymena, BT42 3AH or e-mail info@supportingcommunities.org with ‘Data Protection’ in the heading.  If you are making a subject access request please complete this form.

We will aim to comply with requests for access to personal data as soon as possible, but will ensure it is provided within 1 month of receiving the written request. 

We will verify the identity of the person making the request using reasonable means.

If the request is made electronically, Empowering Communities will provide any information held in a commonly used electronic format.

Any person making a request will be advised of:

  • Data Retention periods
  • Their right to have inaccurate data corrected.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

This Privacy Notice was last reviewed in May 2018. It is kept under regular review and revised as necessary.