CAO Privacy Policy


Commitment to privacy of personal information
The Canadian Association of Optometrists (CAO, the Association) is committed to protecting the privacy of its members (optometrists) and others who use CAO services. This document describes the policies and practices of the CAO with respect to the collection, use, and disclosure of personal information. The Association collects, uses, and discloses personal information only with the consent of the individual, except as otherwise permitted or required by law. The collection, use, and disclosure of personal information will be governed by the version of this policy in effect at the time.

Personal information
Personal information is any information that can be used to distinguish, identify, or contact a specific individual. This policy applies to personal information of members (ODs), others who have expressed an interest in the CAO, or individuals who have participated in an event sponsored or organized by the CAO. The personal information that CAO generally keeps includes: name, date of birth, address, telephone number, e-mail address, OD graduation year, school, and license number.  The Association also collects information related to the member’s involvement in the CAO, such as major interests (sections), or volunteering or serving the CAO.

The CAO is responsible for all personal information under its custody or control, including information which it may transfer to a third party for processing. The Chief Executive Officer of the CAO is the Privacy Officer for the Association. The Privacy Officer may delegate day-to-day responsibility for administration of this policy to other employees, however the Privacy Officer remains accountable for the CAO’s handling of personal information. The Privacy Officer may be contacted at: 234 Argyle Avenue, Ottawa K2P 1B9 613.235.7924 extension 212. CAO is responsible for personal information sent to third parties who provide services to the Association. CAO requires any such third parties to use the personal information only for the purposes for which it is provided to them, and to protect the privacy of the personal information in accordance with privacy laws and in a manner that is consistent with this policy. The CAO stores and processes personal information in Ottawa, Canada.

Purposes for collecting, using and disclosing personal Information
Membership Information. CAO collects and uses personal information from members for the following purposes:

  • to track membership in the CAO
  • to keep members informed about the activities of the CAO by providing information on the Association and its member benefits and resources
  • to keep members informed about information, activities, and events of other organizations on topics related to the aims of the CAO
  • to respond to members’ questions and communications
  • to advise members about meetings, conferences, workshops, and seminars made available by other reputable organizations that may be of interest to members
  • to analyze the demographics of the membership for future planning purposes
  • to contact members to request their input on membership surveys; the information gathered will help shape the CAO’s future direction

Disclosure of personal information.
The CAO does not disclose personal information unless it has obtained the individual’s consent, other than as permitted or required by law.  CAO members can withdraw from the national online “Find a Doc” search tool by contacting the Association.

The CAO uses personal information only with the consent of the individual, except as otherwise permitted or required by law. CAO also gives members the option to opt out of receiving information sent by the Association or from any third parties.

The CAO provides information and some member services via its website. By using the website, users agree that information may be collected, used, and disclosed in accordance with this policy. The website contains links to other third party websites. These links are provided for the convenience of users. The CAO has no responsibility or liability for, or control over, those websites or their collection, use, and disclosure of an individual’s personal information.

The CAO seeks to ensure that the personal information it maintains is accurate and up to date.

Limiting retention of personal information
The CAO retains personal information as long as it is needed for the purpose for which it was collected and in order to meet legal and regulatory requirements.

The CAO protects personal information against such risks as loss or theft, unauthorized access, disclosure, copying, modification, and destruction by using appropriate security measures.  CAO employees also sign a general confidentiality agreement as part of their employment contract.

An individual may request access to the information held about him or her at any time by contacting the CAO Privacy Officer. The Association will endeavour to respond to any such request as quickly as possible and, in any event, within the legally required time periods. Subject to certain exceptions and limitations prescribed by law, an individual will be given access to any personal information the CAO holds about the individual. The CAO will correct or amend personal information that is shown to be incomplete or inaccurate.
Questions and complaints
For further information about this policy, or to make a complaint, please contact the CAO Privacy Officer at 613.235.7924 extension 212. The CAO will investigate all complaints and take appropriate action as a result of such investigation.

Updated September 2016