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Confidentiality Policy

Aim

To protect the baby and child at all times and to provide clear, unambiguous guidance to all staff involved regarding their legal and professional roles, as well as to ensure good practice throughout the organisation that is understood by children, parents, carers, franchisees, staff and volunteers.

Rationale

Basking Babies seeks to put the baby and child at the heart of the experience and to provide a safe and secure environment. It seeks to implement the underlying principles of Every Child Matters Agenda, in accordance with current child protection and safeguarding guidelines, as well as to ad- dress any confidentiality concerns that may arise. It is committed to developing creative and positive environment for babies, children and families, while also recognising the responsibility to use, hold and safeguard information received. Sharing information unnecessarily is an erosion of trust. Basking Babies is mindful that it is placed in a position of trust by children and parents, and there is a general expectation that all matters of confidentiality will be handled professionally.

Objectives

  • To provide consistent messages within Basking Babies about handling information about ba- bies and children once it has been received.
  • To foster an ethos of trust within Basking Babies, where children, parents/carers, franchisees, volunteers and all staff feel safe.
  • To ensure that franchisees, staff, volunteers and parents/carers are aware of the organisation’s confidentiality, policy and procedures.
  • To reassure parents/carers and children that their ‘best interests’ will be maintained.
  • To ensure that parents/carers know that organisation staff cannot offer unconditional confiden- tiality.
  • To ensure that if there are child protection issues then the correct procedure is followed, work- ing with the guidelines set out in the policy.
  • To ensure that confidentiality is a whole organisation issue and that in classes ground rules are set for the protection of all.
  • To ensure that parents have a right of access to any records the organisation may hold on their child but not to any other child that they do not have parental responsibility for.

Guidelines

  • All information about individual children is private and should only be shared with those fran- chisees and staff that have a need to know.
  • All social services, medical and personal information about a child should be held in a safe and secure place which cannot be accessed by individuals other than organisation staff.
  • Basking Babies continues to actively promote a positive ethos and respect for the individual:
    • Basking Babies has appointed Carla Davison, the founder and owner of Basking Ba- bies as a Safeguarding/Child Protection Leader.
    • There is clear guidance for the handling of child protection incidents. All franchisees, contractors, staff and employees have regular training on child protection issues.
    • There is clear guidance for procedures if a franchisee or member of staff is accused of abuse.
    • Staff and franchisees are aware that effective growth and development education which brings an understanding of what is and is not acceptable in a relationship, can lead to disclosure of a child protection issue.
    • Staff and franchisees are aware of the need to handle all issues about different types of families in a sensitive manner.
    • Information collected for one purpose should not be used for another.
  • Parents/carers need to be aware that the organisation cannot guarantee total confidentiality in all cases, for example issues involving child protection or criminal issues. Parents/carers and children should feel reassured that only in exceptional circumstances confidentiality will be broken.
  • Basking Babies prides itself on good communication with parents and carers. All staff make sure they are available to talk to all parties concerned about issues that are causing concern.
  • All children have a right to the same level of confidentiality irrespective of gender, race, religion, medical concerns and special educational needs. A lot of data is generated in organisations by these categories but individual children should not be able to be identified.
  • Confidentiality is a whole organisation issue.
  • Health professionals have their own code of practice dealing with confidentiality. Staff should be aware of children with medical needs and the class information sheet should be accessible to staff who need that information but not on general view to other parents/carers and children.
  • Photographs of children should not be used outside of the organisation premises without par- ents/carers permission. At no time should the child’s name be used with a photograph so that they can be identified.
  • Information about children will be shared with parents but only about their child.
  • All personal information about children including medical and social services records should be regarded as confidential. Any personal data will only be kept as long as necessary or for the length of time as stipulated by law.
  • Addresses and telephone numbers of parents and children will not be passed on except in exceptional circumstances or to a receiving organisation.

Monitoring and Evaluation

The policy will be reviewed and evaluated as part of the organisations monitoring cycle.

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