We use personal data (information that relates to and identifies living people) and other information to help us to carry out our remit of leading a culture change in the NHS so that speaking up becomes business as usual.

The office is not a statutory body or regulator and therefore we do not use personal data as part of any statutory function.

Instead, we firstly use the personal data we receive to support individuals to speak up in the NHS, for example helping them to access assistance from their local Freedom to Speak Up Guardian, or signposting them to sources of independent advice, such a free legal support services. Secondly, we use the personal data contained in referrals made by individuals to review how their employers in the NHS have handled their cases of speaking up, in order to identify learning and to recommend how this can be improved. These are tasks carried out in the public interest.

We share the personal data we receive only when the individual concerned has given us their consent to do so and, where we have such consent, we share it with those persons or bodies whose role is to support individuals to speak up, for example Freedom to Speak Up Guardians. We will only share personal data without consent in exceptional circumstances where there is evidence of a need to protect individuals from the risk of harm, or from actual harm, for example with safeguarding authorities.

If you’re a Freedom to Speak Up Guardian, or in a supportive speaking up role, such as a champion or ambassador, your details will be stored by the National Guardian’s Office and used for these purposes:

  • Communicating with you about matters relating to the work of Freedom to Speak Up Guardians.
  • Adding your contact information (name, organisation, main email address and telephone number) to the National Guardian Office’s public directory of Freedom to Speak Up Guardians if you have ticked ‘Yes’ to your details being place there.
  • Giving your contact information (name, organisation, main email address and telephone number) to those who may contact the National Guardian’s Office asking for information about their Freedom to Speak Up Guardian.

This information will be stored for a period of no more than five years without further assurance being sought that it is still accurate. If, at any time, you would like your information removed from our system, please email enquiries@nationalguardianoffice.org.uk

The National Guardian’s Office is hosted by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which is the data controller for the purpose of data protection law. Please see link to the main privacy notice on the CQC’s website for further details.

Confidentiality

Please note, all information shared with individual team members will be treated as information shared with the National Guardian’s Office and dealt with by the most appropriate team member.

If there are reasons why you feel that particular information should not be shared within the team, please make that clear when contacting the office.