1. Introduction

We are committed to protecting your privacy. We have developed a Privacy Statement to reflect that commitment.

In this Privacy Statement, “personal information” means information which identifies an individual or from which an individual’s identity can be reasonably ascertained. For example, your name, home address and home telephone number can all be personal information.

This Privacy Statement applies to personal information about our service users, contractors, consultants, job applicants and members of the public. It does not apply to personal information about our employees. Employees can see our Privacy Policy (available on the Intranet) or contact our Human Resources team for more information about employee privacy.

2. Application of privacy laws

We are bound by a number of laws which protect your privacy. Depending on the context, these may include the National Privacy Principles under the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and the Information Privacy Principles under the Information Privacy Act 2000 (Vic). We sometimes handle personal information relying on exemptions under these laws, for example in relation to:

  • related bodies corporate;
  • provision of services to government authorities; and
  • operations outside Australia relating to personal information of non-Australians. Any permitted handling of personal information under such exemptions will take priority over this Privacy Statement to the extent of any inconsistency.
3. Personal information collected

We collect personal information that you provide to us directly, as well as from publicly available sources and third parties such as those identified in the “use and disclosure of personal information” section below.

In certain circumstances we may collect sensitive information such as health information. We will only collect this information when you provide it voluntarily, consent to us collecting it or as otherwise authorised by law.

We are sometimes required to collect personal information by laws such as the Children Youth and Families Act 2005 (Vic) and the Working With Children Act 2005 (Vic).

4. Use and disclosure of personal information

We may collect, use and disclose your personal information for purposes including:

  • for our service users and prospective service users, assessing what services you require, whether we can provide those services and evaluating ongoing services provided to you;
  • assessing any application made by you to become a volunteer, contractor or employee;
  • for supporters who provide their personal information- unless you opt out or we are prohibited by law – to contact you about our activities and to provide our newsletters, reports, invitations and requests for support; and
  • research, internal reviews, quality assurance, analysis and production of consolidated statistics,

We may not be able to do these things without your personal information. For example, we may not be able to contact you, provide services or offer employment to you.

Many of our tasks are performed with the assistance of our contractors and volunteers, and we may share some or all of your personal information with them. We may also outsource certain tasks involving your personal information to third party service providers, including organisations that provide counselling, homelessness, housing, domestic violence support, archival, research, mail and delivery, auditing, consulting (including legal and accounting), security or technology services.

We may need to share information with government agencies, particularly the Victorian Department of Human Services, where appropriate in relation to funding arrangements or where relevant to services we are providing, however this will be on a de-identified basis unless required by law or you otherwise consent.

If you have applied for a position with us, we may exchange some or all of your personal information with your referees, police, Centrelink and recruitment consultants, for appropriate purposes relating to considering your application including checking your criminal record where permitted by law.

5. Accessing and updating your personal information

If at any time you wish to view or alter your personal information, please contact the Privacy Officer (details below). We ask that you provide us with as much detail as you can about the particular information you seek, in order to help us retrieve it. An access fee may be charged where permitted by law. In certain circumstances, we may not be required by law to provide you with access or to correct your personal information. If that is the case, we will give you our reasons for that decision.

We take reasonable steps to make sure that the personal information we collect, use and disclose is accurate, complete and up-to-date.

6. Security of personal information

Irrespective of whether personal information is stored electronically or in hard copy form, we take reasonable steps to protect the personal information we hold from misuse and loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.

7. Additional information for users of our Website

If you visit (the “Website”) to read, browse or download information, our system may record information such as the date and time of your visit to the Website, the pages accessed and any information downloaded. This information is used for statistical, reporting and website administration and maintenance purposes only.

Like many websites, our Website may use “cookies” from time to time. Cookies are small text files that we transfer to your computer’s hard drive through your web browser to enable our systems to recognise your browser. Cookies may also be used to record non-personal information such as the date, time or duration of your visit, or the pages accessed, for website administration, statistical and maintenance purposes. Any such information will be aggregated and not linked to particular individuals. The default settings of browsers like Internet Explorer always allow cookies, but users can easily erase cookies from their hard-drive, block all cookies, or receive a warning before a cookie is stored. Please note that some parts of the Website may not function fully for users that disallow cookies.

While we take great care to protect your personal information on our Website, unfortunately no data transmission over the Internet can be guaranteed to be 100% secure. Accordingly, we cannot ensure or warrant the security of any information you send to us or receive from us online. This is particularly true for information you send to us via email. We have no way of protecting that information until it reaches us. Once we receive your personal information, we take reasonable steps to protect its security.

The Website may contains links to other sites. We are not responsible for the privacy practices or policies of those sites.

8. Further information

If you have any questions or complaints, please contact the Privacy Officer at:

Privacy Officer
Berry Street
1 Salisbury Street
Richmond Victoria 3121
Phone: (03) 9429 9266
Fax: (03) 9429 5160

For information about privacy generally, or if your concerns are not resolved to your satisfaction, you can contact the Office of the Federal Privacy Commissioner on 1300 363 992 or via

Berry Street Victoria Inc ABN 24 719 196 762
Version 2 – Date of Publication 11 June 2010