Respecting your confidentiality is one of the Counseling and Wellness Center's highest priorities. To ensure your confidentiality, counseling records are kept in an electronic database stored in a secured, password-protected environment separate from all other academic records. In order for counselors to discuss any information about you with any individual or agency outside of our center, you must give signed consent. However, there are exceptions to confidentiality to be aware of before beginning counseling.
These exceptions are:
- If you are in danger of hurting yourself or another, your counselor is obligated to protect you or the other person. Please note that Illinois law mandates that the parents of a minor must be notified.
- If your counselor suspects that a minor or an elderly person is being abused or neglected.
- If we receive a court order to release a copy of your information.
- If you have been reported to the Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT), the counselor will disclose to the BIT that the student has received services.
- If we need to seek legal advice from Triton’s policy and legal affairs advisor.
- If the parents of a minor (under the age of 18) request information. (Need to clarify what level of disclosure for minors at what age. TW)
- Mental Health Services – Consent and Parental Access/Notification:
Illinois law permits minors age 12 and older to receive a limited amount of counseling services or psychotherapy on an outpatient basis without parental consent, and providers are prohibited from notifying the minor’s parents without the minor’s consent “unless the facility director believes such disclosure is necessary,” in which case the minor must be informed. Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Code, 405 ILCS 5/3-301.Minors age 16 and older may be admitted to a mental health facility and treated as an adult; however, in that case, parental consent is required. Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Code, 405 ILCS 5/3-302. Under Illinois law, minors age 12 through 17 have the right to access and authorize release of their own mental health and developmental disabilities records and information, and their parents have such rights only if the minor does not object or the therapist does not feel there are compelling reasons to deny parental access. (Nonetheless, parents may receive information regarding the minor’s physical and mental condition, diagnosis, treatment needs, services provided/needed, and medication.). Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Confidentiality Act, 740 ILCS 110/5.
- Social Networking and Confidentiality:
Triton counseling staff will not accept friend or contact requests on social networking sites from students with whom they have professional relationships. This policy exists to minimize the potential for online relationships that could compromise client confidentiality and the privacy of both clients and staff.