Privacy Policy

Your privacy is important to us. We are committed to protecting your privacy and to ensure that we uphold your trust. Our Privacy Policy is created in compliance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (Privacy Act) and the Australian Privacy Principles. It covers how we collect, use, disclose, and store your information. 

What is personal information

Personal Information is information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable, whether the information or opinion is true or not and whether the information or opinion is recorded in a material form or not.

Why we collect your personal information

St Mary & St Mina’s Coptic Orthodox Church (Church) is a non-profit organisation committed to raising up followers of Jesus Christ, in the Orthodox way of life. We provide a range of Coptic Orthodox services including our liturgies, bible studies, kids and youth programs, community and mission projects and fellowship social events. To participate in certain programs or activities, we need to collect some information from those who want to be involved with our Church, enabling us to communicate with them and provide the services.

What personal and sensitive information we collect

The information that we collect about you will vary depending on the nature of involvement and the activities that you choose to be involved in. We endeavour to only ask you for information that is reasonably necessary for the activities you are seeking to be involved in. You are not required to provide the personal and/or sensitive information that we request, but if you chose not to provide it, it may hinder or prevent your involvement or inclusion in some activities and communications and the degree of pastoral support and care that we can provide you with.

The information that we collect includes:

• contact details (name, address, telephone numbers, email, etc.);

• personal details (birthdate, marital status, gender, etc.);

• family details (spouse, children, etc.); and

• education qualifications and occupation information (profession, job title, etc.).

Some personal information is considered ‘sensitive information’. At times we collect sensitive information about you, including:

• health information;

• religious information (eg church attendance, spiritual father of confession);

• professional and practice information;

• credit card details; and

• any idiosyncratic or personal information we obtain from you or others about you.

Anonymity and Pseudonymity

Where practicable and lawful, we will endeavour to provide you with the option of interacting anonymously or by using a pseudonym. However, this may prevent us from practically and effectively communicating with you.

Online privacy

We are committed to protect your privacy on our web sites. All access to our public websites is anonymous, except for any areas where you login with your own account or enter your personal information.

When you visit our public websites a record of your visit is logged and the following data is supplied by your browser:

• the date, time and length of your visit to the website;

• your IP address and/or domain name;

• your operating system (type of browser and platform); and

• the pages and resources you accessed and the documents you downloaded.

Cookies are only used to store temporary information about your current visit, and all data stored in them is encrypted.

Our website may contain links to third party websites, and third party websites may also have links to our website.

Our privacy policy does not apply to other websites. The operators of other websites may collect your personal information.

We encourage you to read the privacy policies of any website you link to from our website.

Certain members of our IT committee have access to private sections of our public websites, which also log the pages and resources that each individual accesses for auditing and security purposes.

How we collect your information

We may obtain personal information from you directly or otherwise through a member of your family.

We collect personal information about congregation parishioners, servants, volunteers, employees, contractors and visitors to our Church by:

• any of the forms on our website, mobile app, other electronic means, or paper forms;

• face-to-face meetings;

• email or social media message or conversation;

• phone calls; and

• voice or image recording.

We will advise you of the purposes for collecting the information at the point that it is collected, and of any third parties to whom the information is usually disclosed.

If at any time you supply us with personal information about another person, you should ensure that you are authorised to do so and you must agree to inform that person who we are, that we will use and disclose that personal information and that they may gain access to it should we hold that information.

Unsolicited collection of personal or sensitive information

At times we may discover personal or sensitive information about you from a third party. If it is not personal information that is contained in a Commonwealth record, and if it is not necessary for conducting Church services, or we are unable to advise you, we will take steps to destroy or de-identify the information if it is lawful and reasonable to do so.

Security and holding of your personal information

We take all reasonable steps to protect the personal and sensitive information we hold from interference, misuse, loss, unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.

Our IT systems use password protection and data encryption and comply with applicable security standards. Only authorised personnel are permitted to access your data. Where we use cloud storage, we take all reasonable steps to ensure that the providers we use have privacy policies in place that comply with Australian privacy regulations and principles.

How we use your information

We only use your personal and sensitive information for the reason we collect it as outlined above and for the purpose(s) for which it was collected and for any other purposes that you consent to, or as otherwise reasonably expected or permitted by law.

Direct Marketing

At times we will use your personal information to directly communicate with you about topics which we think you would be interested in, and be of benefit to you, such as church services or events. These communications will typically be in the form of email or SMS text message. We will always give you the ability to opt-out of these communications, unless the communication is required for involvement in a specific event, service or other area in which you have chosen to participate.

Accessing your personal information

You can gain free access to your personal and sensitive information by requesting it from us. In some circumstances, we may need to deny your access request, for example where:

• granting you access would have an unreasonable impact on someone else’s privacy;

• any other reason as consistent with the Privacy Act.

In such a situation we will provide you with an explanation in writing for why access is denied, including information on the process for a complaint regarding the refusal.

Correcting your personal information

We take all reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information we hold and collect is relevant, accurate, complete and up-to-date. You may update your details by contacting us at the details provided below, or on our website.

Disclosure of your information

At times we may make some personal information available to other parties that work with us to provide our Church services. We will prohibit such parties from using your personal information except for the specific purpose(s) for which we supply it.

We also make some personal and sensitive information available to some of our servants/volunteers, where they have agreed to a confidentiality statement, in order for us to provide pastoral services or manage certain aspects of our ministry. This does not reduce our commitment to your privacy. We work with all volunteers to ensure that your privacy is respected and secured.

Except where it is required by law or where otherwise permitted by the Privacy Act, we only use or disclose your personal information with your express or implied consent.

Privacy questions and complaints

If you have any questions or concerns about our Privacy Policy or if you would like to make a complaint about a possible breach of local privacy laws, please contact us using the contact details below.

We may update our Privacy Policy from time to time. When we do, we will revise the updated date at the bottom of this page. We encourage you to frequently check this page for any changes to stay informed about how we are helping to protect the personal information we collect.

Privacy Officer

St Mary & St Mina’s Coptic Orthodox Church

Email: privacy@stmary.org.au


Last Updated: 16 May 2020

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