Policy Concerning a Senator's Responsibility to Ensure the Confidentiality of Information Received from a Constituent
Whereas, a Senator and such Senator’s employees or volunteers ("Senate Personnel”) encourage constituents from their district to seek their assistance with regard to a wide array of services and issues;
Whereas, a Senator and Senate Personnel often seek and obtain pertinent personal information from a constituent in order to appropriately assist such constituent;
Whereas, this pertinent personal information may include, among other things, information relating to an individual’s sexual orientation, receipt of public assistance, or status as a crime witness, victim of domestic violence or sexual assault, or immigration status; and
Whereas, a constituent may expect a degree of confidentiality with regard to such personal information which does not accurately reflect the actual degree of confidentiality which such information will receive from a Senator or Senate Personnel.
NOW, THEREFORE, in recognition of the need for a policy which discloses to a constituent the expectations that he or she may have regarding the confidentiality of personal information imparted to a Senator or Senate Personnel:
2. Other than in situations involving court orders, authorized law enforcement requests and/or ethics enforcement committees or entities, a Senator will have great discretion regarding the degree of confidentiality given to personal information gathered outside of NYSenate.gov, including, but not limited to, phone calls, face to face conversations, paper mail, and faxes. A Senator and/or Senate Personnel will not be compelled to share data except in a manner that the Senator and/or Senate Personnel deem appropriate given the circumstances involved. Although a Senator and/or Senate Personnel cannot guarantee to a constituent that personal information will not be shared in a manner that a constituent did not anticipate, a Senator and/or Senate Personnel must use their best efforts to share the information in a responsible and relevant manner.
3. In the event of a transition of Senators, the outgoing Senator will determine what data will remain with the Senator-elect. Senate Technology Services will be available to assist any Senator with the transfer of data.
Signed - Secretary Angelo Aponte
Date - 05 May 2010