SASS staff are what’s called “privileged advocates.” This means that it is illegal for us to share any information about the people we help. This is true even for people who are younger than 18.
SASS won’t share your information with anyone. We do not share information with family members, doctors or nurses, law enforcement officers, or other organizations unless you ask us to.
As a client of SASS, you have the rights about the information you share with SASS staff and volunteers:
- You may choose what information to give us. We will still help you even if you choose not to answer some of our questions.
- If we are going to save any information about you, like your name or phone number, we need your permission. We’ll ask you to sign a form that is called a “Retention of Information” form. If you haven’t signed this form, then we don’t have any information about you. It is your choice to sign this form or not. We only keep this information for a short time. As soon as the form has expired, we destroy the information.
- We will not share your name, address, phone number, or ID numbers outside of SASS. The only exception is when you give us written instructions that ask us to share information for you or when a law requires that we share.
- If you have questions about who can see your information, you can ask any staff member.
You are in charge of your information. You can talk to SASS staff about what you want us to share and what you want us to keep confidential.
You may want us to connect you with other agencies who provide different services than we do. We will help you figure out the best way to connect with them. If you want us to directly share information with the other agencies, ask a SASS staff member for help. They will prepare a “Release of Information” form, where you can share exactly what we are and are not allowed to share.
We will tell you what we know about how other agencies might protect or share your information. But once we share information with another agency at your instruction, we can’t control what they will or won’t do with your information.
Some of SASS’s staff may be required by law to share certain information about people they help. These people are called “mandatory reporters.”
Any staff member who is a mandatory reporter will tell you before you share any information with them. You may ask any staff member if they are a mandatory reporter.
If we do have to share information because of a law, we will talk to you about what we have to share and help you plan how to handle what comes next.
SASS has to report some data about the work we do and the groups of people we help. This data is general, not about any particular person. For example, we report the number of clients in different age ranges and the number of clients who need certain types of help. We never include identifying information, like names, in any data that we report. If we think that even a general piece of information could identify you, we won’t share it.
For some SASS programs (like educational events or support groups), you will be required to share some information with us, such as your name or email address, in order to register. We won’t ever ask for more information than we need and will only use that information for that program.
We will always do our best to keep any registration information confidential, but we cannot 100% guarantee confidentiality if you are participating in a group program. By registering for a program like that, you are accepting some risks. Registering and participating in a program like that could reveal your identity to another participant or organization. Please only participate if you feel comfortable with this small risk.
Do you have more questions?
We are always willing to talk with you about your privacy and your rights. If you have questions or if you think that we did something wrong with your information, please contact Martina Shabram at firstname.lastname@example.org or 541-484-9791