When to Share Personal Information

Follow the steps in the decision tree to help you determine whether you have the legal ability to share personal information about a supported child, their parents or legal guardians:

Engaging with Families on Information Sharing

The act allows service providers to collect, use and share personal information about supported children and their parents or legal guardians without their consent. Timely sharing of information among service providers and trustees can play a crucial role in protecting the safety of at-risk children and promoting their well-being.

Although consent is not required before sharing personal information, it is a best practice for service providers to inform parents, legal guardians and supported children over 12 years of age of the legal authority to share their personal information with other service providers and trustees. If possible, this should happen before service providers collect personal information (e.g., during an intake session). To assist in this process, please see the:

It is important to note that every case is different. Service providers should consider whether it is reasonable for them to notify children, parents and legal guardians, as the case may be.

If it is believed to be in the supported child’s best interests, it is a best practice to engage the family in service planning. Either before or after sharing personal information under the act, a service provider or trustee may inform the parent, legal guardian or supported child over 12 years of age about a specific disclosure.

Before sharing any personal information about a child with the child’s parents or legal guardians, service providers should ensure that there is legal authority to share the information under another Manitoba or federal law, such as The Personal Health Information Act.

Important Reminders

  • This act does not override other legislation. Although service providers and trustees are able to share personal information under this act, they may also be able to share personal information under another Manitoba or federal law, such as The Child and Family Services Act and The Personal Health Information Act. Service providers and trustees should review relevant acts, and determine which ones apply and take priority.
  • Personal information includes personal health information.
  • It is up to the person who has the personal information (and not the person requesting it) to determine if it is appropriate to share it. The act does not require anyone to share information if they feel it is not in the best interests of the child.
  • Personal information about a person who is taking care of a supported child, but who is not the supported child’s parent or legal guardian, cannot be shared.