Privacy and Responsible Information Sharing

Protecting and using information responsibly to deliver more effective services and outcomes

The WA government provides a range of services and programs aimed at improving the quality of life for Western Australians. In order to deliver these, we collect and hold a lot of information.

Did you know that the WA public sector is one of only two jurisdictions in Australia without overarching legislation that either protects people’s personal information, or sets out the rules for safely sharing information?

That is why we are committed to introducing new whole-of-government privacy and responsible information sharing legislation for the WA public sector.

This is being done because, firstly, and most importantly, you have a right to know that your privacy will be protected. You need to be assured that any information held by the WA public sector about you, your family or your business, will be handled responsibly and securely.

Secondly, much of the information the public sector holds could be better used to benefit you, your family and the community. Information is one of our most valuable assets. If used wisely, it has the power to address society’s needs now and into the future.

Your views are important

The Government recognises that privacy is very important to Western Australians and is committed to ensuring everyone has the opportunity to have their say on the best arrangements for WA.

The proposed arrangements for WA have been outlined in the Privacy and Responsible Information Sharing discussion paper which can be found in the Learn More section below.

Consultation on the discussion paper was open from 5 August to 1 November 2019.

To find out what we heard during this consultation, please read our Consultation Summary Report

Thank you to all those who contributed via a formal submission, comments through our online portal, or attending an information session, roundtable or workshop. 

Your feedback will help us understand your thoughts on privacy protection and information sharing within the public sector and with authorised third parties.

A second consultation period with the public sector is ongoing.

We are currently consulting with a wide range of government agencies to finalise the model. Due to the significant impacts of COVID-19, this process has been delayed.

Better outcomes for Western Australians

There is broad agreement that responsibly unlocking the value of information held by Government will improve decision making and long-term planning, resulting in better services and outcomes for you, your family, business and the community.

You will benefit

from having stronger privacy protections which will provide clarity around the circumstances in which personal information should or should not be shared. It will also mean that services can be better tailored or designed to meet your needs.

The community will benefit

from Government having the combined data needed to better plan for the future and make key decisions about the services it provides, like where to prioritise transport, health and education investments. Accountability and transparency will also be improved.

Society will benefit

from Government, businesses, scientists, and academics working together to gain new insights on how to tackle complex economic, environmental and societal issues, creating a safer and fairer society for all.

Page reviewed 3 September 2021