Confidentiality and safeguarding
We take confidentiality and safeguarding very seriously at the Youth Enquiry Service and have policies in place to protect our volunteers and the people who visit us. These policies are written in accordance with the law, BACP principles and ethical guidance. This page will take you through what policies we have in place and when we may need to disclose information.
We want you to feel safe and secure when you visits the Youth Enquiry Service and these policies are designed with the interest of keeping young people safe and acting in their best interests. If you are unsure or have any questions then please do get in touch.
Our confidentiality policy is in place to protect you and your data, ensuring that what you tell us remains confidential between you and the Youth Enquiry Service.
We aim to keep everything you tell us completely confidential and in most cases this is true. However, there are times, if we believe that there is a risk of significant harm, when this might not be possible (see below). We will not tell your parents/guardians what you tell us but we may have to disclose information to
This will all be explained to you when you visit us and if you do receive counselling then your counsellor will talk you through exactly what this means.
This policy applies to any interaction that you have with us. Our confidentiality policy is different from our data protection policy which relates to how we collect, process and store any data.
Can my parents find out what I tell the Youth Enquiry Service?
No. What you tell us is confidential and we do not tell anyone what you tell us. We do not tell anyone who is using our services even if they ask. There may be times we need to tell another professional service (see below), but you will be consulted about this.
Our safeguarding policy is designed to keep young people safe and what to do to make sure we are making the right decisions to keep young people safe.
Our policy covers activities undertaken to protect specific children who are suffering or likely to suffer significant harm. Please note that the term children or young person is used to refer to anyone under the age of 18 years of age.
If you would like to see our whole safeguarding policy or have any questions then please ask one of our staff or get in touch.
When we will disclose information
We cannot guarantee full absolute confidentiality when you visit the Youth Enquiry Service if we believe that there is a risk of significant harm to yourself or others or we have a legal obligation to do so.
If we believe this is the case then we may have to disclose information to the relevant authorities. You will be told and consulted about this if we believe this is the case.
Whilst disclosures are rare, they are made on a case by case basis and any decision will be made with your best interest in mind.
What is significant harm?
There is no hard definition about what significant harm means and will be different in different circumstances (one example could be suicidal intent). Our staff will make a judgement on whether, given the context, a breach needs to be discussed.
Who makes the decision to disclose information?
If one of our staff think that there may be a need to breach confidentiality then they will discuss this with a senior manager or their supervisor. A decision to breach confidentiality is never made by one person and will always be discussed with you.
What would be disclosed?
If we have to breach confidentiality then only the information relating to the issue relating to the breach would be disclosed. Everything thing else would continue to be confidential and under our confidentiality and safeguarding policy.
Who would you disclose to?
We will only disclose confidential information to a relevant professional third party e.g. social services.
What can I do to avoid my information being disclosed?
Disclosure of any information only happens in the most serious of incidents and it is not something you should be afraid of. Any disclosure will be made to ensure yours and others safety and we will always act in your best interests to a professional and relevant service.
What to do if you are worried about our confidentiality or safeguarding policy?
If you would like to look at our full policies in detail then please get in touch. We will always talk you though what this means and how this applies to you when you visit us.
Our policies exist to protect you and others from significant harm and everyone who works for us will have appropriate safeguarding training and you will always be told before any disclosure is made.