Privacy Policy

1. About this policy

Canberra Community Law has chosen to make a public commitment to good privacy practice by voluntarily adopting the principles of the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and the Information Privacy Act (ACT).  Both laws require entities to have a privacy policy. This privacy policy outlines the personal information handling practices of Canberra Community Law.

This privacy policy is written in simple language. The specific legal obligations of Canberra Community Law when collecting and handling your personal information are outlined in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and in particular in the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) found in that Act. They are also outlined in the Information Privacy Act (ACT) and in particular the Territory Privacy Principles (TPPs) found in that Act.

We will update this privacy policy when our information handling practices change. Updates will be publicised on our website and through our email lists.

2. The kinds of personal information we collect and hold

We collect and hold personal information about you, such as your:

  • name
  • date of birth
  • gender
  • phone number
  • email address
  • physical address
  • education
  • employment history
  • occupation
  • income; and
  • housing.

Sometimes we may need to collect sensitive information about you, for example, to provide legal services to you. This might include information about your health, racial or ethnic origin, and criminal history.

3. How we collect personal information

We collect personal information directly from you when you:

  • provide legal services to you
  • participate in our community legal education program
  • participate in our clinical legal education program
  • participate in our research; or
  • apply for a job or to volunteer with us.

We may also collect your personal information from third parties, for example, when other community organisations refer you to us.

Where possible, we will allow you to interact with us anonymously or using a pseudonym. For example, if you contact us with a general question we will not ask for your name unless we need it to adequately handle your question.

However, for most of our activities we usually need your name and contact information and enough information about your matter to enable us to handle your request.

4. How we hold personal information

  • We hold personal information:
  • on paper files which are stored at our office in lockable areas;
  • on password protected electronic files;
  • in the cloud; and
  • on a web-based platform hosted by Microsoft’s SharePoint.

We take steps to protect the security of the personal information we hold from both internal and external threats by:

  • engaging an IT provider to regularly assess the risk of misuse, interference, loss, and unauthorised access, modification or disclosure of that information
  • taking measures to address those risks, for example, we keep a record (audit trail) of when someone has added, changed or deleted personal information held in our electronic databases; and
  • conducting regular internal and external audits to assess whether we have adequately complied with or implemented these measures.

We destroy personal information in a secure manner when we no longer need it. For example, we generally destroy our paper records after seven years. We use a secure document disposal service for this purpose.

5. The purposes for which we collect, hold, use and disclosure personal information

We collect, hold, use and disclose personal information for the purposes of:

  • providing legal services to people on low incomes
  • providing legal education to community groups and other organisations
  • providing clinical legal education to law students
  • making policy and law reform submissions to governments, policy makers, politicians, media outlets and peak bodies
  • reporting to our funders including the ACT Government’s Justice and Community Safety Directorate and the Community Services Directorate
  • reporting to Community Legal Centres Australia
  • conducting publicity campaigns
  • handling complaints
  • managing employee and volunteer records; and
  • running a website and social media.

When providing legal services to people on low incomes, we disclose personal information to other lawyers who volunteer their time to provide legal services.

When providing clinical legal education, we disclosure personal information to students from the Australian National University’s College of Law when they undertake legal work under the supervision of one of our solicitors.

We remove or alter information that identifies you (or is reasonably likely to do so) when we make submissions or report to the ACT Government’s ACT Justice and Community Safety Directorate, the Community Services Directorate and to Community Legal Centres Australia.

6. How you may access your personal information and seek correction of it

You can request access to personal information we hold about you.

You can request personal information to be corrected.

To make such a request, please contact us.

7. How you may complain if we breach the APPs or the TPPs

If you think we have mishandled your personal information, please contact us.

8. Disclosure to an overseas recipient

We will not disclose your personal information to an overseas recipient, unless you give us your consent to do so, or we are required by law.

9. Disclosure to third parties

We will not disclose your personal information to other people, such as carers, or parents, or a law enforcement agency, unless you give us your consent to do so, or we are required by law.

10. Contact us

To contact us you can:

  • visit us a Level 1, 21 Barry Drive Turner ACT 2612 (accessible entrance via the Environmental Defender’s Office)
  • email us at
  • write to us at PO Box 547 Canberra ACT 2601; or
  • call us on (02) 6218 7900.
  • visit us at
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