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What about privacy?

Privacy has been defined as "the interest of a person in sheltering his or her life from unwanted interference or public scrutiny… at common law there is no right to privacy. However remedies may be granted for an infringement or breach of privacy on the grounds of defamation, trespass and nuisance… The most comprehensive legislation protecting privacy in Australia is the Privacy Act 1988, which gives force to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966 art 17 and to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development Guidelines on the Protection of Privacy and Transborder Flows of personal Data. (Butterworths, 921)
A number of factors give rise to considerations and possible Provisions regarding privacy including:

statutory duties
Commonwealth laws
State & Territory laws
particular legislative schemes
contractual duties
service agreements
employment and volunteer contracts
client agreements.

Statutory duty of privacy

There are a number of statutory duties of privacy, including privacy legislation and other legislation that includes a privacy scheme or requirements.

Privacy laws are established under the Federal Privacy Act 1988 and the Invasion of Privacy Act 1971. The State Invasion of Privacy Act (Queensland) has a very limited scope and reach. It effectively regulates the use of listening devices and the entry into private dwellings. The federal Privacy Act establishes a privacy regime for agencies covered by the scheme. Some State governments have established complete privacy schemes but as of March 2008 Queensland has not yet enacted a similar scheme.

The Privacy Act 1988 covers public and private sector records, including those held by a range of community organisations. The cornerstones of the regime include:

information privacy principles
national privacy principles
approved privacy codes

Information Privacy Principles (IPPs):

Principle 1: Manner and purpose of collection of personal information

Principle 2: Solicitation of personal information from individual concerned

Principle 3: Solicitation of personal information generally

Principle 4: Storage and security of personal information

Principle 5: Information relating to records kept by record-keeper

Principle 6: Access to records containing personal information

Principle 7: Alteration of records containing personal information

Principle 8: Record-keeper to check accuracy etc. of personal information before use

Principle 9: Personal information to be used only for relevant purposes

Principle 10: Limits on use of personal information

Principle 11: Limits on disclosure of personal information
National Privacy Principles (NPPs):

Principle 1: Collection

Principle 2: Use and Disclosure

Principle 3: Data quality

Principle 4: Data security

Principle 5: Openness

Principle 6: Access and Correction

Principle 7: Identifiers

Principle 8: Anonymity

Principle 9: Transborder data flows

Principle 10: Sensitive information
Contractual requirements for privacy

Privacy duties or obligations can arise because of contractual arrangements between community organisation and funding body (service agreement), contractual arrangements between community organisation and community workers (employment or volunteer contracts) and arrangements between community organisation/community worker and client (client agreements).

In many cases there may well be more than one basis for privacy obligations. For example a community organisation may require that its workers observe privacy requirements as well as providing such an undertaking to its clients.

Community legal centres through their funding arrangement with the Commonwealth are required to observe privacy principles. In turn, workers in community legal centres, including legal and non legal workers owe their clients a duty of confidentiality and clients enjoy certain rights to privacy. Community legal centres also require volunteers to sign agreements about client confidentiality and privacy.
Key issues around the contractual requirements for privacy include:

Understanding whether there are any contractual requirements for confidentiality and how those requirements must be observed
What are the limits and exceptions?
What constitutes a breach of the contractual duty?
What are the consequences of a breach?

Privacy Commission