Consultation period

19 October 2022 - 4:00 pm To 11 November 2022 - 11:59 pm

Privacy Notice

Your personal information is protected by law, including under the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act).

The Department of Social Services (Department, we, us, our), collects personal information about individuals for a range of purposes to enable it to carry out its functions. More information about how we handle your personal information is set out in our Privacy Policy.

This privacy collection notice is designed to ensure you are aware of certain matters in relation to the Department’s collection of your personal information, as required by the Privacy Act.

 What is the purpose of this Consultation?

We are currently asking people to tell us what they think about some proposed changes to the Disability Support Pension (DSP) Impairment Tables through DSS Engage (Consultation).

The Social Security (Tables for the Assessment of Work-related Impairment for Disability Support Pension) Determination 2011 (the Impairment Tables) is due to expire on 1 April 2023.

The Impairment Tables are used to determine eligibility for the DSP by assessing how a person’s functional impairment affects their ability to work.

We have designed the Consultation to obtain the views of stakeholders to help inform the development of the new Impairment Tables.

As part of the Consultation, you will be asked for your name and email address, but you do not need to provide your phone number or address. Mostly, it is your choice what personal information you provide to us, as you can nominate ‘prefer not to say’ in your submission. If you do not want to provide us your name, you could provide a pseudonym so you cannot be identified.

Where we are able to identify you or another person from your submission, or if you provide unsolicited information (through free text boxes or the nature of the questions asked), we will handle your submission in accordance with the Privacy Act.

The Department may collect, or have already collected, your information (including any personal information) for one or more of the above purposes. This notice is designed to ensure you are aware of the purpose and certain matters in relation to that collection, as required by the Privacy Act.

 What is ‘personal information’ and ‘sensitive information’?

‘Personal information’ is information or an opinion about an identified individual, or an individual who is reasonably identifiable. This applies whether the personal information is true or recorded in a material form. For example, personal information can include an individual’s name, signature, residential address, phone number, email address, date of birth, photographs, employment information, location information from mobile devices and internet protocol addresses.

‘Sensitive information’ is a subset of personal information. It includes information or an opinion about an individual’s racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious beliefs or affiliations, philosophical beliefs, membership of associations or unions, sexual orientation or practices, criminal record, or health, genetic or biometric information. Health information includes any information regarding whether an individual has a disability and the nature of their disability.

Who is collecting your personal information?

Your personal information is being collected by the Department and by Services Australia, who will be assisting the Department with some of the information technology aspects of the Consultation.

What personal information we collect

Through your participation in the Consultation, we may collect a range of personal information, some of which could be sensitive information.

The personal information we will require includes your:

  • name (you can choose to use a pseudonym); and
  • email address.

The personal information we will ask for, but is optional to provide, includes:

  • age
  • disability
  • stakeholder group
  • location and remoteness
  • if you provided a submission during the first phase of consultations
  • your views on proposed changes.

Please only provide information that you are comfortable with providing.

We may collect personal information from you as well as from other people. For example, we may collect personal information from you about your personal views in relation to your experience, and others’ experience, with DSP and the proposed changes for the Impairment Tables.

You will also be asked whether you would like your submission to be published with identifying information (including name or name of organisation), anonymously, or not at all.

 How we collect your personal information

Your personal information relating to your personal views will be collected if you choose to participate in this Consultation. We will do this by collecting information from your responses to the Engage consultation.

Why we collect your personal information

Your personal information is collected for the purposes of incorporating feedback on proposed changes into the new legislative instrument, which includes:

  • internal reporting and analysis; and
  • policy development.

The Department may contact you by the email address provided, where your submission contains queries or requests that require our response.

Some of the information collected by us from our targeted or public consultations or surveys has research value in developing policies that extend beyond the specific consultation or survey for which it was originally collected. Where this is the case, the information that we collect from this Consultation may be used for our other research purposes. In doing so, we will apply the Australian Privacy Principles to the handling of any personal information.

Who we disclose your personal information to

We may disclose your personal information to the following people, organisations or third parties:

  • Services Australia, for the purposes of assisting the Department to administer DSS Engage and providing the Department with other information technology services; and
  • other parties where the disclosure is authorised by law.

All entities contracted by us are subject to strict confidentiality, privacy and security obligations.

When making a submission, we ask you if you consent to your submission being made public on DSS Engage and if you consent to your name being included in the publication of your submission. If you agree, the information you provide in your submission may be published and be made publicly available on DSS Engage. Any demographic information you provide will only be used for internal analysis, and will not be published. Public submissions and details of their author may also be referenced by the Department in public forums and documents.

If you do not want your submission or personal information to be published on the Department’s website, we will still be able to consider your views if we have the appropriate information.

Where you have agreed to your submission being published with identifying information or anonymously, we may redact parts of your response before disclosing your submission or decide not to publish your submission. This may occur in circumstances where your submission:

  • contains information that is not relevant to this Consultation;
  • contains certain personal or sensitive information;
  • could potentially defame others or is offensive in nature; and/or
  • contains operationally sensitive information.

No information about you will be disclosed overseas unless your submission is published on DSS Engage (which is publicly available).

Storage of your personal information

Storage of personal information (and the disposal of information when no longer required) is managed in accordance with the Australian Government records management regime, including the Archives Act 1983, agency-specific records authorities and general records authorities. This ensures your personal information is held securely by the Department.

All personal information collected by the Department is stored on Services Australia’s cloud storage, on servers located in Australia. Services Australia and the Department retains effective control over any personal information held on our cloud, and the information is handled in accordance with the Australian Privacy Principles.

Any information disclosed to the external consultant will be handled in accordance with the Privacy Act and stored in accordance with agreed security protocols.

More information

The Department’s Privacy Policy contains more information about how we handle personal information, how you can access personal information that we hold about you, and how you can seek correction of that personal information. It also contains information about how to make a complaint about a breach of the Australian Privacy Principles, as set out in the Privacy Act.

If you have any concerns or questions, you can contact us at

Confirmation and consent

By providing personal information as part of your Consultation response, you consent to the Department’s collection and handling of personal information in accordance with this collection notice and the Department’s Privacy Policy.

Please note that you do not need to provide sensitive information if you do not wish to do so.

By providing sensitive information as part of your Consultation response, you consent to the Department collecting your sensitive information and handling your sensitive information in accordance with this collection notice and the Department’s Privacy Policy.