Who are we?

We are 1800RESPECT, the National Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence Counselling Service (Service), which has been funded since 2010 as part of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010-2022

The Service is delivered by Telstra Health Pty Ltd ABN 38 163 077 236 (Telstra Health), a subsidiary of Telstra Corporation Limited, on behalf of the Commonwealth of Australia through the Department of Social Services. In this privacy statement, references to 'us', 'we' and 'our' include the Department of Social Services, Telstra Health and any other contractors and service providers engaged in delivering the Service.

Who does this privacy statement apply to?

This privacy statement applies to all individuals whose personal information (including sensitive information) we may collect in the course of providing the Service. This includes the people who contact us because they experience the impacts of sexual assault, domestic or family violence; family and friends affected by violence or abuse; and the frontline workers and professionals who use our resources to support people experiencing violence and abuse.

Why do we collect personal information?

We are committed to protecting your privacy. We may collect personal information from individuals and third parties.

You may use the Service confidentially or by using a pseudonym (that is, a fake name). However, it may not always be possible to provide you with all aspects of the Service confidentially or through using a pseudonym. Where it is impracticable for the Service to be provided confidentially or through the use of a pseudonym, personal information, call information and/or telecommunications data may be used to help us effectively manage the Service and to help provide you with quality care that meets your needs.

Where you provide us with personal information (that is, information about you or another person where you or that other person is identifiable) or where you have authorised another person to provide us with personal information, this information will be handled carefully and will be collected, used, stored and disclosed in a manner consistent with the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act).

What do we use personal information for?

We collect and use personal information (which may include your sensitive information such as health information) to enable us to provide the Service and to meet our legal obligations. For example, we may use your personal information (where you choose to provide it) to provide you with online or telephone counselling services or to respond to your queries and feedback.

We may collect and use personal information, other call information and telecommunications data to identify callers in order to provide tailored support and help manage the Service.

In general, we also use and disclose your personal information to:

  • identify usage trends;
  • provide tailored and personalised Service;
  • help us to manage our Service standards; and
  • comply with our legal obligations.

If you are a frontline worker or professional who supports people experiencing violence and abuse, we may use your personal information to:

  • manage your registration to workers webinar series;
  • provide you with frontline workers toolkit and resources;
  • send you our workers and professionals newsletter;
  • process and administer your requests to have your service listed;
  • provide you with the tools, resources, and services we make available from time to time; and
  • respond to your queries and feedback.

We may use de-identified information (where no one is identifiable) to improve the 1800RESPECT service, for reports and in evaluation of the Service and its various elements. De-identified information can also be used in academic articles and presentations at conferences.

We record calls made to the Service for quality assurance and training purposes. You can choose not to have your call recorded.

If you contact us online via the ‘chat’ option, we keep a transcript or record of the chat interaction to help us improve our service.  If you don’t want a transcript to be kept, you can tell the counsellor who interacts with you online.

We hold your information in accordance with the Archives Act 1983.

Any personal information held by Telstra Health or its contractors and service providers in connection with the Service is held on behalf of the Department of Social Services, so that we can provide the Service. If Telstra Health stops providing the Service on behalf of the Department of Social Services, and the Department of Social Services requests, we will transfer the information to the Department of Social Services or to such contractors as the Department of Social Services appoints to perform the Service.

Who do we disclose personal information to?

The information may be shared between Telstra Health, the Department of Social Services and with contractors and service providers engaged to provide the Service (collectively, Contracted Service Providers). Where Contracted Service Providers are engaged, they are bound by the Privacy Act and obligations of security and confidentiality, and contractual measures are in place to ensure they comply with those obligations.

We may disclose personal information to other persons with your consent; where required to do so by law, such as to comply with mandatory reporting requirements in relation to suspected cases of child abuse and neglect; or where otherwise permitted under the Privacy Act. If we are issued with a subpoena requiring disclosure of personal information, we take reasonable steps to ascertain whether disclosure might result in further harm or distress to those experiencing violence and abuse and, if so, we use all reasonable endeavours to object to the disclosure on any legal grounds available to us.

De-identified information (where no one is identifiable) may also be shared with research partners.

How do you access or correct personal information about you?

We take reasonable steps to make sure that the personal information we collect, use and disclose is accurate, complete, up-to-date and relevant. 

You can request to access or correct personal information we hold about you by emailing 1800respectenquiries@health.telstra.com. We will require you to sufficiently verify your identity and provide further information (including by completing a prescribed form). If you do not provide the information requested, we may not be able to process your request.

We will aim to assess all requests for access or correction within 30 days and will provide our response (along with any reasons) in writing. 

Where can you get more information about our privacy practices?

Our respective Privacy Policies contain more information about our privacy practices, including how you may request access to, or correction of, personal information we hold about you, how you can lodge a privacy complaint and how we manage such complaints. Whether your personal information has been collected by one of the below organisations will depend on which service you have used. If you would like more information, please contact us by emailing 1800respectenquiries@health.telstra.com.

You can obtain the latest version of our Privacy Policies by visiting our websites below:

This Privacy Statement is current as at June 2022 and may be updated from time to time.

Please consult this page regularly for any changes to the Privacy Statement.

Website cookies

When you interact with our Site, we strive to make your experience easy and meaningful. We, or our third-party service providers, may use cookies and similar technologies to track site visitor activity and collect site data. Examples of information that we may collect includes technical information such as your computer’s IP address and your browser type, and information about your visit such as the products you viewed or searched for, the country you are in, what you clicked on and what links you visited to get to or from our site.

If we identify you with this information, any use or disclosure of that information will be in accordance with this Privacy Statement.

A cookie is a text file that a website transfers to your computer’s hard drive for record-keeping purposes. Cookies help us gather and store information about visitors to our websites and are intended to improve your website browsing experience whilst visiting. Our cookies assign a random, unique number to each visitor’s computer. They do not contain information that would personally identify the visitor, although we can associate a cookie with any identifying information that is or has been provided by a Customer while visiting our Site.

We, or our third-party service providers, use cookies that remain on your computer for a specified period of time or until they are deleted (persistent cookies). These cookies record clickstream information (data reporting the URLs, or names of the pages, on our Site that have been visited). We may also use cookies that exist only temporarily during an online session (session cookies) – these cookies allow you to log in to your account and they allow us to identify you temporarily as you move through the Site. Most browsers allow users to refuse cookies, but doing so may impede the functionality of some portions of our Site.

We may also engage third parties, such as Google Analytics, to track and analyse Site activity on our behalf. To do so, these third parties may place cookies or web beacons to track user activity on our Site. The information generated by these cookies (including your truncated IP address) is transmitted to and stored by Google, and other third party providers, on servers in the United States. Google will use this information for the purpose of evaluating your, and other users’ use of our website, mobile website, compiling reports for us on website activity and providing other services relating to website activity and internet usage.

We use the data collected by such third parties to help us administer, report on and improve the quality of the Site and to analyse usage of the Site.

We recommend viewing the site in private browser or incognito mode. For more information on device and online safety, including using this site, visit our Technology and Safety section.