Recently at the LUM board meeting, LUM’s policy concerning the release of client
information was amended to provide instruction to staff members and volunteers in the event they are presented with a subpoena for information or a warrant for the arrest of a LUM client by officers of the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE). The action is in response to stepped-up activity by ICE agents nationwide at food pantries, homeless shelters, and other church sponsored human service programs.
The information gathered or received about a LUM client has always been held in the strictest confidence; but with the recent incidents reported as a result of the new US immigration protocol, it was necessary to include specific language relative to the release of information to the US Immigration & Customs Enforcement Agency.
The policy has been amended to include the following:
Special instructions to staff and volunteers in the event that officers from the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) request information about LUM clients:
- All staff are reminded to adhere to this client confidentiality policy as well as confidentiality guidelines outlined in the National Association of Social Worker Code of Ethics
- The Executive Director shall be informed immediately should an ICE agent present a subpoena for information or a warrant for arrest for any LUM client, volunteer or staff member
- Any court issued warrant for arrest or subpoena for information about any LUM client, volunteer or staff member shall be referred to the executive director for compliance
- Executive Director will consult with legal counsel before complying and report all such requests to LUM Board President