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Complaints about Scottish parliamentary staff or services

This privacy statement explains how we collect and use personal information as a data controller for the following process: Complaints about Scottish parliamentary staff or services

Some of the language used in privacy notices can be specialised.  The Information Commissioner's website provides a useful introduction to key terms and concepts.


Purpose of the processing

We process any personal information provided in order to deal with the complaint submitted about the Scottish Parliament’s staff or services. We also use the information in complaints in order to review and improve our services and facilities.

Categories of information processed

For complaints, we process the following “normal category” information: names, email addresses, postal addresses and/or telephone numbers. Depending on the nature of the complaint, we may also process information that is defined by the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) as a “special category”, for example, information about health, sexual orientation or religious or political beliefs.

Source of the information 

Personal information is provided to us directly by individuals (“data subjects”) or by someone contacting us on their behalf.

Legal basis for processing

We process the personal information provided in relation to complaints because we have to comply with the complaint handling procedures of the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO). These procedures were established through powers under the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman Act 2002, as amended by the Public Services Reform (Scotland) Act 2010. The processing is therefore necessary to comply with a legal requirement to which the SPCB is subject, in accordance with Art 6(1)(c) UK GDPR.  

Data sharing 

Personal information you provide in relation to a complaint may be shared internally with other offices within the Scottish Parliament if this is required in order to deal with the complaint. Special category data will not be shared unless the information is essential to the consideration of the complaint.

If you decide to take your complaint to the SPSO, we will share with the Ombudsman any information required as part of their investigation. 

Although we publish on our website statistics about complaints and examples of actions taken as a result of complaints, we will not publish any personal details or any information that could identify individuals. 

Retention of data 

Information about complaints is stored electronically for three years from the date of our last response, after which it is deleted from our systems.

If they do not identify members of staff and do not include special category data, complaints received as emails or online forms are added to our electronic complaints system and then deleted; complaints received in hard copy are scanned, added to our electronic systems and then destroyed. Any correspondence relating to such complaints is also stored on our electronic systems. 

If they identify members of staff or include special category data, complaints and all correspondence relating to them are stored securely by the relevant office on our electronic systems or in dedicated hard copy storage. All such documentation will also be deleted, destroyed or anonymised three years after the date of our last response.

Children and young people safeguarding and child protection

In line with the principles underlying the National Guidance for Child Protection in Scotland (2014), published by the Scottish Government, our staff may report a concern to the relevant authorities if they come across an issue during their work which causes them to think that a child may be at risk of abuse or harm.

Your rights

Data protection legislation sets out the rights which individuals have in relation to personal data held about them by data controllers. Applicable rights are listed below.  You can exercise your data subject rights in particular circumstances depending on the purpose for which the data controller is processing the data and the legal basis upon which the processing takes place.  

The following rights may apply:

Access to your information

You have the right to request a copy of the personal information about you that we hold. For further information, have a look at our page on Making a Subject Access Request.

Correcting your information

We want to make sure that your personal information is accurate, complete and up to date and you may ask us to correct any personal information about you that you believe does not meet these standards.

Objecting to how we may use your information

You have the right at any time to require us to stop using your personal information for direct marketing purposes. In addition, where we use your personal information to perform tasks carried out in the public interest then, if you ask us to, we will stop using that personal information unless there are overriding legitimate grounds to continue. 

  • Please note that the right to object to the processing of personal data does not apply where the data subject has consented to the processing, subject to the right to withdraw consent. 
  • The right to object to the processing of personal data for the purposes of a public interest task is restricted if there are legitimate grounds for the processing which override the interest of the data subject. 
  • The right of erasure and the right to object to processing of personal data do not apply where personal data is processed for the performance of a legal obligation. This will be considered on a case by case basis and depends on what personal data is involved and the risks further processing of that data could pose to you.

Deletion of your information

You have the right to ask us to delete personal information about you where:

  • You consider that we no longer require the information for the purposes for which it was obtained
  • We are using that information with your consent and you have withdrawn your consent – see Withdrawing consent to using your information below
  • You have validly objected to our use of your personal information – see Objecting to how we may use your information above
  • Our use of your personal information is contrary to law or our other legal obligations
  • Please note that the right allowing for deletion or erasure of personal data (right to be forgotten) does not apply in cases where personal data is processed for the purposes of the performance of a task carried out in the public interest.
  • The right of erasure and the right to object to processing of personal data do not apply where personal data is processed for the performance of a legal obligation. This will be considered on a case by case basis and depends on what personal data is involved and the risks further processing of that data could pose to you.

Restricting how we may use your information

In some cases, you may ask us to restrict how we use your personal information. This right might apply, for example, where we are checking the accuracy of personal information about you that we hold or assessing the validity of any objection you have made to our use of your information. The right might also apply where this is no longer a basis for using your personal information, but you don't want us to delete the data. Where this right is validly exercised, we may only use the relevant personal information with your consent, for legal claims or where there are other public interest grounds to do so.

Withdrawing consent to using your information

Where we use your personal information with your consent, you may withdraw that consent at any time and we will stop using your personal information for the purposes for which consent was given.

Please contact us in any of the ways set out in the Contact information and further advice section if you wish to exercise any of these rights.

Changes to our privacy statement

We keep this privacy statement under regular review and will place any updates on this website.  Paper copies of the privacy statement may also be obtained using the contact information below.

This privacy statement was last updated on 23 March 2021.

Complaints

We seek to resolve directly all complaints about how we handle personal information but you also have the right to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner's Office online at: https://ico.org.uk/make-a-complaint.

Or by phone at: 0303 123 1113

Contact information and further advice

If you have any further questions about the way in which we process personal data, or about how to exercise your rights, please contact the Head of Information Governance at:
The Scottish Parliament
Edinburgh
EH99 1SP

Telephone: 0131 348 6913

(Calls are welcome through the Text Relay service or in British Sign Language through contactSCOTLAND-BSL.)

Email: [email protected]

Please contact us if you require information in another language or format

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