Please take a few minutes to read over this notice. This Privacy Notice sets out what may happen to any personal information you give me. I have an office in Leinster House, Dublin 2.  My telephone number is 01 618 3018, and my email address is catherine.martin@oireachtas.ie. I can be also be contacted through the contact form on this website.



I am issuing this Privacy Notice because of my duties under the General Data Protection Regulation which comes into force on 25 May 2018. The Privacy Notice applies from that date.  I’m setting out in this Privacy Notice the grounds on which I will deal with personal information belonging to you and to other people and some common examples. Stricter rules apply to some types of personal information which may be described as sensitive personal information. I am also letting you know what conditions apply (often to protect your privacy) to how I can deal with personal information. If unusual circumstances arise not covered by this Privacy Notice, I will address these when I am communicating with you.


  • I will deal with your personal information with your consent. You should only give consent once you have read and understood this privacy notice and completed a consent form.


  • Vital interests of the person referred to. I am allowed to deal with a person’s personal information in order to protect the “vital interests” of the person or of some other person. If the information is sensitive personal information, I may only deal with it on this basis if the person is physically or legally (for example in the case of a child under 18) incapable of giving consent.


  • Public interest and official authority. You may ask me to make a representation or ask a parliamentary question/raise a commencement matter where the matter involves personal information about a third person. It may not always be reasonable to ask the third person’s consent, even if the reference includes sensitive personal information. I also deal with personal information in the course of committee or other parliamentary business. This might, for example, involve dealing with personal information where someone sends me what they claim is a whistleblower’s disclosure.


  • Maintaining contact. It may not always be clear when an existing query requires us to make contact, and I may in due course be able to help you with some matter other than the one you initially got in touch about. Therefore, I will retain your contact details such as landline phone number, mobile phone number, email address, and home address unless:
  • you tell me you don’t want me to retain that information
  • I stop being a member of either Houses of the Oireachtas and there is no prospect of my being re-elected within a short interval of weeks after that
  • at the end of five years from your last communication with me, even if I have been a Member of one or other House for substantially that whole interval (allowing for election periods).

Where those five years are coming to a conclusion, I will ask you if you consent to my retaining those details.  Special rules apply to using someone’s contact details in the course of political activities, see privacy notice re canvassing.


  • Other grounds. I will deal with (including disclosing to someone else) your personal information if the law requires me to do so.  For example, I must disclose particulars of donors to the Standards in Public Office Commission, and details of my election agent at election time. I must make an annual return which lists anyone who has conferred certain types of benefit on me or, in some instances, on my family or close relatives. I will need to deal with your personal information if you exercise rights under data protection law. I will also deal with personal information if the dealing is needed so that I can obtain legal advice or if I need to take part in court or similar proceedings.


As an elected Member of the Houses and, when the time arises, as a candidate for election, I am allowed to do research into people’s political opinions or likely political opinions, for electoral purposes. This is subject to safeguards in accordance with law protecting personal information.


I am allowed to deal with sensitive personal information that has clearly been made public by the person it relates to.


There are instances where I may deal with personal information where I need to do so to perform a contract, or before a contract is entered into, or, where the information is sensitive personal information, in relation to an employment contract.


There are particular circumstances in which sensitive personal information may be dealt with in connection with the activities of a political party.



This depends on why I am dealing with it. No-one will get it voluntarily who does not need to receive it for the purpose for which is being dealt with. For example, if you ask me to make a representation, your personal information will be passed to the relevant Department or State agency and they will deal with it to decide on an answer. If I deal with personal information to fulfil a legal duty, the relevant law will specify who receives it. If I need to deal with it to establish, exercise, or defend my legal rights, it will be passed to and dealt with by my legal advisers, and, on occasion, by other parties to a relevant dispute or their advisers, or to expert or other witnesses, or to the court, tribunal, arbitrator, mediator, or similar entity. Occasionally, legal provisions or a court order may require me to deal with personal information for a purpose apart from why I obtained it, or was otherwise dealing with it.



I do not believe that any personal information I am dealing with and to which this Privacy Notice applies will be transferred to a country outside the EU.



I will keep personal information only as long as is necessary for the purposes set out in this Privacy Notice. In any event, I will not, without your express consent, specific to the particular personal information and the relevant purpose, keep it or otherwise deal with it (than to delete it) once I am no longer a member of either House of the Oireachtas and there is no prospect of my being re-elected within a short interval of weeks after that. There may be rare exceptions to this assurance, such as where the personal information is relevant to a legal dispute ongoing at the time when I stop being a member.



It would be very exceptional for me to deal with personal information for a purpose other than the purpose for which I received it. The need to do so might arise because of a legal obligation. Or it might arise in the public interest, for example, if I received personal information in relation to planned committee or other parliamentary business, but there appeared to be legitimate grounds for forwarding it to a regulatory or investigative authority. Depending on the circumstances, I may need to tell you of the contemplated further dealing with the personal information and who is going to receive it.



You may ask me for a copy of your personal information. You may ask me to supplement or correct your personal information if it is incomplete or incorrect (including out of date). You may be able to ask me to delete personal information, especially if you have withdrawn consent to my dealing with it or I no longer need it, or not to deal with it for the time being, for example, if you think it is incorrect. If I am dealing with your personal information on the basis of your consent, you can normally require me to forward it on to some other person named by you. You may be entitled to object to my dealing with your personal information in the public interest or in my exercise of official authority, but this entitlement is subject to many legal qualifications depending on the personal information and why I am dealing with it. You may object at any stage to my holding on to your contact details. You are entitled not to be subject to automated decision making, including profiling.



If you are not content with how I am dealing with your personal information, you may bring your dissatisfaction to the attention of the Data Protection Commission: see www.dataprotection.ie.