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Privacy notice for House of Lords select committee witnesses

This notice provides information on how the House of Lords administration collects and processes personal data on those who submit evidence to House of Lords select committees (known as witnesses). Unless otherwise stated, this covers those involved in submitting written and oral evidence.

Controller of witnesses’personal data

The House of Lords’ Controller is the Corporate Officer (the Clerk of the Parliaments). The Data Protection Officer is the Head of Information Compliance. The Data Protection Officer may be contacted at or on 020 7219 0100.

Personal data collected, purposes and legal bases

Personal data collected and purpose

The personal data about witnesses collected and processed are normally names, addresses and personal contact details.

Signatures and bank account details of witnesses giving oral evidence may be collected and processed, for the sole purpose of payment of certain expenses to those witnesses.

Processing these personal data is necessary for the functioning of Parliament, in particular for the functioning of the select committee concerned.

Legal base

The legal base for processing these personal data is that processing is necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest (article 6(1)(e) of the General Data
Protection Regulation, which includes the exercise of a function of either House of Parliament).

Special category personal data collected and purpose

Witnesses giving oral evidence may be invited by the House administration to provide data to be used to monitor the diversity of those giving evidence. This may include data on age, disability status, ethnic background, gender identity, religion, belief or non-belief, and sexual orientation.Providing this information is optional. No accompanying identifying information (e.g. name or contact details) will be asked for. While in certain cases it may be possible to identify individuals from individual responses, the House of Lords administration will publish statistical information only in data sets large enough so as not to enable individuals to be identified.

The processing is also necessary “for reasons of substantial public interest” (see article 9 (2)(g) of the General Data Protection Regulation, as supplemented by paragraph 8 of Schedule 1 to the Data Protection Act2018). This allows for the processing of pecial categories of personal data (with the consent of the data subject) for identifying or keeping under review the existence or absence of equality of opportunity or treatment between groups of people.

Sharing of personal data

Personal data held by the staff of one House of Lords select committee may be shared with the staff of another committee, where such sharing relates to committee functions.

Where necessary (including where there are shared services), the House of Lords administration may share witnesses’ personal data with the House of Commons Service.

The House of Lords administration will not share witnesses’ personal data with other third parties unless required to do so by law. Oral and written evidence, together with the names of witnesses, are published on the parliamentary website, may be referred to in committees’ reports and are available in the Parliamentary Archives.


Personal data collected about witnesses are retained in accordance with Parliament’s Authorised Records Disposal Practice.

In connection with committee inquiries the House of Lords administration may retain witnesses’ personal data for archiving in the public interest; this may involve indefinite retention of the data.

Data subject rights

Data subjects have the right to:

  • access to
  • request
  • rectification of
  • request
  • erasure of
  • restrict the processing of
  • object to the processing of
  • data portability of

their personal data held by the House of Lords administration. This is subject to the exceptions in the Data Protection Act 2018.

Right to complain

If a witnessis unhappy with the use of their personal data by the House of Lords administration the witness should contact the Data Protection Officer in the first instance.

Witnesses also have the right to complain to the supervisory authority if they consider that the administration is in breach of its data protection obligations.