The Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities recognizes that people with disabilities have the same right to privacy as any other. Privacy refers to both the protection of one’s personal life from intrusions by others and protection of information about oneself. The Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution provides “the right of people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures.” With respect to protection of personal information, confidentiality has historically been a cornerstone in providing medical care and related human services to people.
In an age of rapidly evolving communication technologies, the Council recognizes the positive role electronic media plays in the compilation and exchange of information. Government agencies, businesses, and non-profits can quickly exchange information and gather and analyze massive amounts of data. This helps in streamlining business, reducing costs, and ensuring appropriate services for people. However, this increased capacity for data collection can also be used intentionally or unintentionally to the detriment of the people served by government agencies. The Council supports the following basic principles for all information and data collection systems:
Council approved November 4, 2016