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Dispute Over Legality of Sharing Victim's Data

PERSONAL PRIVACY—VICTORIA

March 16, 2012

The Victorian branch of a national Catholic abuse charity has used a small business loophole to claim exemption from privacy requirements that would make it illegal to share a Melbourne victim's data with that region's church-affiliated abuse agency, reports The Age. The victim's lawyer says he reported the incident to Towards Healing's Victorian office so as not to involve the Melbourne archdiocese, and claims that because the agency operates as a health service it is not exempt as a small business. The agency calls the sharing a proper use, not disclosure to a third party, noting, "the complaint should have been made to the Melbourne archdiocese...The referral we made complied with our privacy policy."
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