How we use your personal information for the services provided by the Housing Advice (Homelessness) Team

The Council provides services for local communities and the people who live in them. Undertaking this work means that we must collect and use information about the people we provide services to and keep a record of those services. Because we collect and use personal information about individuals we must make sure that they know what we intend to do with their information and who it may be shared with.

We have summarised in this privacy notice some of the key ways in which we use your personal information for the Hosuing Standards Team. This information should be read in conjunction with the Council’s corporate privacy notice

1.Who we are, what we do. 

The Housing Advice Service provides housing related advice to anyone who contacts the service in accordance with the Housing (Wales) Act 2104. This is a statutory obligation for Local Authorities to help prevent Homelessness

Clients who present to Housing Advice are interviewed by a Housing Solutions Officer to understand the clients specific circumstances and housing situation (The Housing Needs Assessment).  Following this interview and assessment appropriate advice and support is given to prevent homelessness. 

The service aims to prevent homelessness by maintaining current housing arrangements where possible or by sourcing affordable alternative accommodation. Where appropriate, were the assessment determines clients have a priority need, emergency temporary accommodation can be provided .            

2. What and whose personal information do we hold?

We hold information about clients seeking Housing advice and assistance on individual client case records. The types of information we collect and use will typically include:

  • Contact details, including name, address, date of birth, NI numbers telephone numbers and email address.

  • Information in respect of the family make up, including all the personnel  details of the household that will make up the homelessness application

  • Financial income details

  • Any tenancy related debt

  • Any medical diagnosis

  • Any criminal convictions

  • Type and size of accommodation needed (number of beds , any adaptations required etc)

  • Clients preferred areas of Housing choice

  • Current landlord / Mortgage provider details

  • Any other relevant information to carry our the Housing Needs Assessment 

3. Where does the service get my information from?

Personal information is obtained directly from the client who is seeking advice and assistance. Information is gathered and recorded electronically during a face to face Housing Needs Assessment.

We also receive information from other Council Services and third party organisations and companies in order to verify the information that the client has provided to us during the Housing Needs Assessment. More information on this can be found below.

4. What we will do with your personal information?  

The Housing Advice Service uses the personal information listed above to:

  • Assess a client’s Housing needs.
  • Verify the information that’s been provided to us to confirm eligibility for assistance and to give the best advice based on the individuals circumstances. 
  • Assist clients by giving the most appropriate Housing related advice to sustain tenancies and prevent homelessness. 
  • Work with trusted partner organisations to find suitable accommodation.
  • Information may be shared with Housing providers to secure accommodation  

  • Carry out our legal obligations.

5. What is the legal basis for the use of this information?

Data Protection law says that we are allowed to use and share personal information only where we have a proper and lawful reason for doing so.

Our lawful basis for processing personal information is order to provide Housing Advice service is:

To undertake our official Council duties and to satisfy our legal obligations under the following legislation 

  •  Housing (Wales) Act 2014  

6. Does the service share my personal information with any other organisation?

As mentioned above, the Housing Advice Centre shares personal information with other Council Services and trusted partner organisations who have a mutual interest in preventing homeless. We do this for the purposes listed above. These organisations may include:

Other Council Services:  

  • Housing Benefit

  • Council Tax

  • Social Services

  • Education Services   

Third party organisations and government agencies:  

  • The Department of Work and Pensions

  • Health Authorities

  • The Police

  • Probation Services  

  • Housing providers

Other:

  • Letting Agents

  • Mortgage companies

  • Landlords

  • Support providers – can we give an example?

7. How long will my information be kept?

We will only keep personal information for as long as necessary and in line with legal requirements.

Client information will be kept for seven years from acceptance of a Housing duty

8. Your information, your rights 

TheGeneral Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) gives you important rights, including the right to access the personal information the services hold about you.

 View further details on your information rights and how to exercise them 

9. Contact us  

If you have any concerns or would like to know more about how the service using your personal information please contact us in one of the following ways:

By email : Homelessness@rctcbc.gov.uk 

 Telephone : 01443 495188

In writing : The Housing Advice Centre, Sardis House , Sardis Road , Pontypridd  CF37 1UU

Help us improve - don't include personal or financial information, e.g. your National Insurance number or credit card details.