Privacy Notice: Northern Ireland Degree in Social Work Partnership (NIDSWP)

  1. Introduction

The Northern Ireland Degree in Social Work Partnership (NIDSWP) (formerly known as the Regional Body) was established in 2003 as part of the implementation of the Department’s reform of professional social work training, that one regional partnership should be established to plan social work training arrangements across Northern Ireland in order to optimise the use of resources and to promote consistency of quality in course provision.

More detailed information about the different aspects of our work can be found on our website:

NIDSWP recognises the importance of protecting personal and confidential information in all that we do, all we direct or commission, and takes care to meet its legal duties. Key legislation includes:

  • the General Data Protection Regulation 2016 (GDPR),
  • the Access to Health Records (Northern Ireland) Order 1993 (AHR)
  • the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOI),
  • the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR),
  • the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA),
  • relevant health service legislation, and the
  • common law duty of confidentiality
  1. Your Information

NIDSWP uses personal information for a number of purposes.  This Privacy Notice provides a summary of how we use your information. To ensure that we process your personal data fairly and lawfully we are required to inform you of:

  • What personal information we collect
  • Why we need your data
  • How it will be used
  • Who it will be shared with
  • How long it will be kept for

2.1  What types of personal data do we handle?

NIDSWP processes personal information in relation to the functions it performs with regard to the management of undergraduate and relevant graduate social work students and their placement histories.

NIDSWP also processes information in relation to the management of the Regional Admissions Selection and Recruitment process for applicants onto the Degree in Social Work in Northern Ireland.

The information NIDSWP may hold includes:

  • Student names, addresses, placement history
  • Tutor names, email addresses
  • Practice teacher names, email addresses
  • Partner agencies’ nominated staff names and email addresses
  • Training records for partner agencies’ nominated staff and nominated tutors

2.2  Why we need your data

NIDSWP processes personal information provided by Further & Higher Education Institutions (FHEIs) and Designated Practice Learning Providers (DPLPs).

Information processed for the above purposes is therefore lawful under Article 6 of GDPR as follows:

  • 6(1)(b) – Processing is necessary for the performance of a contract to which the data subject is party or in order to take steps at the request of the data subject prior to entering into a contract
  • 6(1)(e) – Processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller

2.3 How will we use the information about you?

NIDSWP collects and uses personal information for the following purposes:

  • To manage and quality assure the allocation process for NI social work students’ practice learning opportunities
  • To manage, quality assure and monitor all NI social work students’ practice learning opportunities
  • To manage, monitor and quality assure the Regional Admissions Selection and Recruitment process for applicants onto the Degree in Social Work in Northern Ireland.

Data may be used for statistical analysis – any outputs will be anonymised and will not contain personal identifiable information and may be shared with stakeholders such as Northern Ireland Social Care Council (NISCC) and the Department of Health (DoH).

2.4 Collection and use of data from website users

This website uses cookies to better the users experience while visiting the website.  Where applicable this website uses a cookie control system allowing the user on their first visit to the website to allow or disallow the use of cookies on their computer/device.  This complies with recent legislation requirements for websites to obtain explicit consent from users before leaving behind or reading files such as cookies on a user’s computer/device.

Cookies are small files saved to the user’s computers hard drive that track, save and store information about the user’s interactions and usage of the website.  This allows the website, through its server to provide the users with a tailored experience within this website.  Users are advised that if they wish to deny the use and saving of cookies from this website onto their computers hard drive they should take necessary steps within their web browsers security settings to block all cookies from this website and its external serving vendors.

This website uses tracking software to monitor its visitors to better understand how they use it.  This software is provided by Google Analytics which uses cookies to track visitor usage.  The software will save a cookie to your computers hard drive in order to track and monitor your engagement and usage of the website, but will not store, save or collect personal information.  You can read Google’s privacy policy here for further information

Other cookies may be stored to your computers hard drive by external vendors when this website uses referral programs, sponsored links or adverts.  Such cookies are used for conversion and referral tracking and typically expire after 30 days, though some may take longer.  No personal information is stored, saved or collected.

2.5 Sharing your information

NIDSWP will share personal information where appropriate and necessary with third parties such as employing organisations (HSC Trusts / Voluntary Sector / Education Authority / Criminal Justice Sector), NISCC and the DoH.

NIDSWP may also be obliged to provide personal information to another statutory organisation (such as a Police Force, Health Regulator or Investigatory Body), or via a Court Order. Information processed for this purpose is therefore lawful under the articles set out within section 2.2.

2.6 Retaining Information

NIDSWP will only retain information for as long as necessary, in line with the Department of Health (DoH) Good Management, Good Records (GMGR).

For further information, please refer to the following DoH link:

  1. Individual Rights

Individuals have certain rights under GDPR, namely:

  • The right to obtain confirmation that their personal information is being processed, and access to personal information
  • The right to have personal information rectified if it is inaccurate or incomplete
  • The right to have personal information erased and to prevent processing, in specific circumstances
  • The right to ‘block’ or suppress processing of personal information, in specific circumstances
  • The right to portability, in specific circumstances
  • The right to object to the processing, in specific circumstances
  • The rights in relation to automated decision making and profiling
  1. Security of your information

NIDSWP is committed to taking all reasonable measures to ensure the security of all personal information it holds. The following arrangements are in place:

  1. All NIDSWP staff have contractual obligations of confidentiality, enforceable through disciplinary procedures;
  2. Everyone working for the HSC is subject to the common law duty of confidentiality;
  3. Staff are granted access to personal data on a need-to-know basis only;
  4. NIDSWP has appointed a Senior Information Risk Owner (SIRO) who is accountable for the management of all information assets and any associated risks and incidents. A Local Information Asset Officer (IAO) has been appointed as part of its Information Governance arrangements. The Business Services Organisation (BSO), has appointed a Data Protection Officer (DPO) who also has responsibility for NIDSWP.
  5. All staff are required to undertake information governance training every 2 years. The training provided ensures that staff are aware of their information governance responsibilities and follow best practice guidelines to ensure the necessary safeguards and appropriate use of personal information;
  6. A range of policies and procedures are in place.




  1. Receiving Information

5.1 How can you access your personal information?

DPA and GDPR give you the right to access information that NIDSWP holds about you. Subject Access Requests (SARs) must be made in writing. You will need to provide:

  • adequate information (for example full name, address, date of birth) so that your identity can be verified and your information located
  • an indication of what information you are requesting to enable us to locate this in an efficient manner

NIDSWP aims to comply with requests for access to personal data as quickly as possible, and normally within a calendar month of receipt unless there is a reason for delay that is justifiable under GDPR.

We want to make sure that your personal information is accurate and up to date. If you think any information is inaccurate or incorrect then please let us know.

5.2 Freedom of Information

The Freedom of Information Act 2000 provides any person with the right to obtain information held by NIDSWP, subject to a number of exemptions.

5.3 Complaints about how we process your personal information

If you are dissatisfied with how NIDSWP is, or has been, processing your personal information, you have the right to advise NIDSWP of this in writing.


  1. Contact Details

Any request for information should be submitted in writing.  Contact details are as follows:

You may also submit requests or complaints to:

Corporate Services

6th Floor

2 Franklin Street





  1. Changes to our privacy notice

NIDSWP will keep this Privacy Notice under regular review and apply the appropriate updates.