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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 75074
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I am in a church where one or more people are circulating a

Customer Question

I am in a church where one or more people are circulating a list of names of people for prayer listing health information and in some cases information about their mental health situation both at meetings and by email. I know that some of those on the list have no idea that their names are ***** ***** a list - some cannot possibly do so, others lack legal capacity due to dementia etc. I have spoke to the priest in charge and he says it is perfectly reasonable to do this but I am extremely uncomfortable about it - especially as the meeting consist of nothing but talk (gossip) about the situations described and no prayer at all.
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: UK (Kent)
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I have spoken to the priest about my concerns. It is his wife who circulates the list - and h has told me that he sees no problem with it, but I feel that I need to do something about it. I should say that I am a curate and he is my superior.
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: no
Submitted: 12 days ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 12 days ago.

Hi, welcome to JustAnswer. My name is Jo C, I’m a barrister with 12 years of experience and I am happy to help with your question today.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 12 days ago.

How can I help with this please?

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
I feel that I need to ask the person generating this spread sheet containing names (Christian and Surnames) medical diagnoses etc. to stop doing it as the list contains explicit details of peoples' confidential health and other information. I am sure that most on the list have not given the information - or indeed their permission for its use in this way.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 12 days ago.

Ok, so what is your question about this?

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
Is it legal to circulate the full names and personal information including details about health diagnoses, psychiatric state and marital problems of third parties on a computer spreadsheet in paper format and by email to others when a) there is no guarantee that the person concerned has given consent for their health and other personal data to be shared in this way, and b) may not even know that they are on such a list. And B) is is right that consent for inclusion on that list can be 'presumed' to have been given on the basis of hearsay or having given the information to someone in a context which they thought was confidential?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 12 days ago.

It rather depends.

Why do they have this information about them?