Our privacy and cookie policy.

What is a privacy and cookie policy?

At Royal Mencap Society, we are committed to keeping the trust and confidence of everyone who comes into contact with us. So it is important that you know we record your personal data when you do things like visit our website or use our services. We want you to trust us with that information. This privacy and cookie policy explains all you need to know about:

  • what information we collect
  • why we collect it
  • what we do with it
  • when we may share it with others
  • how you can access and update your information.

Why do we collect your personal data?

Basically, to improve the way we communicate and work with you.

Our vision is a world where people with a learning disability are valued equally, listened to and included. We need you to help us make this a reality, and collecting your personal data enables us to learn what different choices of communication work best. This also means we save money that can be used to directly support people with a learning disability. Find out more about how we fundraise in our fundraising promise.

So, to summarise: when you use our website or services, you are agreeing for us to store and process your personal data. The ways we do that are explained in this policy – it is a guide for us to follow too, and we take it very seriously.

Want to change the communications you get from us?

To make changes to the type of communications you get from us and how often you get it, please contact us here or call our supporter care team on 0845 077 0777.

What is in this policy?

Here is a more detailed list of things you will learn about in this policy:

  • who we are
  • what types of information we collect
  • how we will use your information
  • how and when we share your information with others
  • how long we will keep your information
  • how you can access your personal information
  • updating your preferences and stopping communication from us
  • making changes to your personal information
  • how we store your information
  • our use of cookies (we will explain what these are)
  • following links to third party websites (we’ll explain these too).

Changes to this policy

This policy may change, but we will always have the latest version available for you on our website. It there are any major changes, we will add a notice on our website or contact you. This policy was last updated on 15 February 2017.

Who we are

We are Royal Mencap Society (registered company in England and Wales no. 00550457) and we are the UK’s leading charity for people with a learning disability. Our registered charity numbers are 222377 in England and Wales, and SC041079 in Scotland.

Royal Mencap Society is registered as a data controller with the Information Commissioner’s Office under the Data Protection Act 1998 and our registration number is Z5709720.

Golden Lane Housing Limited (registered company in England and Wales no. 03597323) and Mencap Trust Company Limited (registered company in England and Wales no. 01233201) are wholly owned subsidiaries of ours which trade on our behalf. That means they are part of Royal Mencap Society, and we own them – we are their ‘parent’.

Within the context of this privacy policy, ‘we’, ‘us’, ‘our’ or ‘Mencap’ refers to Royal Mencap Society, Golden Lane Housing Limited or Mencap Trust Company Limited. So whenever you see these words, we are talking about these three companies.

What types of information do we collect?

Non-personal information

This type of information does not tell us who you are, but it does help us to improve our services.

How do we collect this information?

When you visit and look around our website, we record things like your IP (internet protocol) address – the unique number of the device you are using to access our website, which pages you visit (on our website only), when they were visited, and the type of device you were using. This information helps us create a better experience for everyone who uses our website.

Examples of the type of information that can be collected using your IP address include the type and version of your browser, and the location from which you are accessing our site. This helps us improve how our page templates appear and change content to make it relevant to our website visitors.

Personal information

This means any information that may be used to identify you, such as your name, telephone number, postal and email addresses, and your bank details if you are supporting us financially.  

How do we collect this information?

There are two main ways that we collect this information: directly and indirectly, including use of third parties (this is explained below).

What does ‘directly’ mean?

We collect information when you do things such as:

  • register on our website
  • request a service from us
  • fundraise on our behalf
  • donate to us
  • sign up to a campaign
  • donate goods to our charity shops and add Gift Aid to your donation
  • give personal data to us.
What does ‘indirectly’ mean?

We also collect information when you use a third party, such as Just Giving, or sign up to an event for us on a third party website. We only collect this information with your permission and in line with the supplier’s privacy policy.

What does ‘third party’ mean?

This means other organisations that we collect data from, but only when you have given them permission. You may give these organisations permission at various times, for example when buying something from a mail order catalogue or joining certain membership organisations. The data we receive depends on your agreement with the organisation. We may also receive information from online services you use such as Facebook or Twitter if you have given them permission to share this with us.

Sensitive information

Sometimes, we may ask you for more sensitive information, such as your personal connection to learning disability or your health condition if you are taking part in a sporting event. We will only collect this information with your permission and will take extra care of it, following the Data Protection Act 1998 and this privacy policy.

How we use your information

Rest assured, our intentions are always good. We collect your information because we need it to help us fulfil your requests, keep in touch with you, and offer you communications that are relevant to you. So, things like:

  • providing any information or services you have requested
  • activating your registration on FamilyHub (if you choose to join) – our online community for parents and family carers of children with a learning disability. For more information on guidelines about our FamilyHub forum, click here
  • processing financial transactions such as donations, entering a paid event or setting up a Direct Debit. This includes processing gift aid with HMRC if relevant
  • keeping a record of any communications between us and you, for example emails and phone calls
  • keeping a record of other interactions too, such as requests for leaflets or attending an event
  • managing and improve how we communicate with you – how you prefer to be contacted, and what information you want to receive. We might contact you about our campaigns, events, appeals, volunteering, news, information and advice, and games, as well as other ways you can support Royal Mencap Society
  • researching the interests, behaviours, demographics (for example, age, sex, income), and trends of the people who are using our information, and range of services, both support and non-support related. We may ask if you wish to take part in more research, such as surveys or focus groups, but this will be voluntary (your choice)
  • creating a profile of what we think might interest you, so that we can offer you relevant communications. We may use your previous communication with us to try and predict how you may respond to different activities
  • getting more information about you from third parties, such as your age, telephone number, email address, or new address if you move. This helps us keep our records up to date, ensuring we continue to send you the most relevant communications – if you have chosen to receive them
  • responding to complaints or queries and look into any legal claims.

We may use information that is available to the public, such as your location, social media accounts and your potential wealth to find similar people to you who might be able to donate.

How and when we share your information with others

We will not sell or rent your information to third party organisations, and we will not share your personal information for others to use in their marketing or fundraising.

We may use carefully selected companies to provide services on our behalf, including delivering postal mail, sending emails, analysing data and processing credit card payments. We will only provide those companies with the information they need to deliver the relevant service, and we make sure that your data is treated with the same level of care as if we were handling it directly.

Legal reasons for sharing information

We will share personal information with companies, organisations or individuals outside of Royal Mencap Society if we strongly believe that access, use, storing or sharing of the information is reasonably necessary to:

  • meet any relevant law, regulation, legal process or lawful governmental request
  • put in force relevant terms of service, including investigation of potential violations
  • detect, prevent or otherwise address fraud, security or technical issues
  • protect against harm to the rights, property or safety of Royal Mencap Society, the people we support or the public, as required or permitted by law.

We know that legal details can be confusing. If any of the above does not make sense, get in touch and we will be happy to clear up any confusion – it is quite important to know what this all means.

How long we keep your information

We will hold your information for as long as you have an active relationship with Royal Mencap Society.

How you can access your personal information

You can access the personal information we hold. To get a copy of this, please write to Royal Mencap Society’s data protection officer at this address:

Data protection officer
Royal Mencap Society
3 Swan Court
Peterborough
PE7 8GX

If you would rather speak to someone, please call our supporter care team on 0845 077 0777.

We try our best to respond to all enquiries within five working days of receiving them, and will offer a full response to all information access requests within forty working days. You may need to pay a small admin fee.

Updating your preferences and unsubscribing

You are in control of how we contact you, for example by post or email. And you can control this by contacting us or by creating an account on Royal Mencap Society’s website. If you want to stop receiving emails, click the ‘unsubscribe’ link at the bottom of any of our emails. We would rather you didn’t miss out, but we respect that it is your decision!

Making changes to your personal information

If your personal details change, please help us to keep this information up to date by getting in touch and telling us:

supportercare@mencap.org.uk

Insight and engagement
123 Golden Lane
London
EC1Y 0RT

0845 077 0777

How we store your information

We ensure there are appropriate technical controls in place to protect your personal details, for example our online forms are always encrypted (this prevents other people accessing them) and our network is protected and checked often.

We regularly review who has access to information that we hold to ensure it is only accessible by trained staff, volunteers and contractors.

We regularly review the information that we hold, and delete anything that is no longer required.

Our use of cookies

What is a cookie?

Cookies are small pieces of information sent to your computer and stored on your hard drive. These pieces of information are then used to improve your experience of our website. Cookies cannot be used to identify you personally. We use cookies to:

  • remember certain information about users so they do not have to give the same information more than once
  • recognise if users are already logged in to certain areas of the website
  • measure how people use our website so we can improve the way information is provided
  • display advertisements based on what parts of the Royal Mencap Society website users have viewed – this is done by placing a cookie on your web browser, for example Google Chrome.

You can find out more about cookies and how to delete or control them at: https://www.gov.uk/help/cookies

The cookies we use

Cookies set by the Royal Mencap Society website:

We use Drupal session cookies (SESS__). A session cookie only lasts for the duration of your visit. A web browser normally deletes session cookies when it quits. These cookies allow the Royal Mencap Society website to work correctly for areas like forums and search tools.

Cookies set by third parties

We also use Google analytics cookies (__utma, __utmb, __utmc, __utmz), which are used to measure how people use our website. We look at reports to make sure that our website is providing the best possible service for our users. Google analytics does not identify you personally – it just collects data about your visit to our website.

This website uses Google AdWords

This website uses the Google AdWords remarketing service to advertise on third party websites (including Google) to previous visitors to our site. It could mean that we advertise to previous visitors who have not completed a task on our site, for example using the contact form to make an enquiry. This could be in the form of an advertisement on the Google search results page, or a site in the Google Display Network. Third party vendors, including Google, use cookies to serve advertisements based on someone’s past visits to our website. Of course, any data collected will be used in accordance with our own privacy policy and Google’s privacy policy. Google AdWords remarketing allows us to tailor our marketing to better suit your needs and only display advertisements that are relevant to you.

You can make changes to how Google advertises to you using the Google Ad Preferences page, and you can stop interest-based advertising by changing your cookie settings or permanently using a browser plugin. Get in touch if you need help with this.

Following links to third party websites

Our website contains links to websites owned by other people. Royal Mencap Society will not pass on any personal information about you to any other website. You can read other websites’ privacy policies to find out how they may use any personal information that you submit to them.

Do you have any questions?

If you have any questions or want to find out more, please email: supportercare@mencap.org.uk or call our supporter care team 0845 077 0777.

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