GDPR Compliance Policy and Expectations

Guidance and Background on what DA Leaders need to know about the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

What is GDPR?

GDPR - General Data Protection Regulation - governs the protection of personal data of individuals residing in Europe. GDPR's goals are to enhance individuals' control and rights over their personal information and to simplify the regulations for international business. Under GDPR, consumers own their information - names, addresses, email addresses, etc., and thus have the right to control its usage. Companies and organizations - like Democrats Abroad - have an obligation to give individuals the tools to exercise that control.

GDPR is European Law, but it has been adopted as the standard policy for ALL OF DEMOCRATS ABROAD.

- Updated January 2024

Contents Below

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What do I need to know about GDPR?

GDPR was approved and adopted by the EU Parliament in April 2016. It came into force on Friday May 25, 2018.

GDPR applies to all EU residents, not just citizens.  This means that these laws apply to all members living in Europe and effects how we deal with membership information on a global level.

What do I need to do? 

If you are a leader for your country or chapter, or if you are a volunteer with access to our database, please read the following Articles.  They contain crucial information on what you can and cannot do with Membership Information. Even if you are on your local Executive Committee and do not access member data yourself, you need to understand these policies.

  1. Do's and Dont's Under GDPR:  Some of our older practices are changing - just slightly! And some old habits, although they may die hard, must be put to rest.  
  2. Contacting Members - DA Policy: How to contact our members without violating the GDPR guidelines.
  3. Best Practices for Administrators: How to follow the rules if you are a database, email, or web administrator.
  4. Deleting Members: This has also changed with GDPR, and it is crucial to follow the new steps. 
  5. Social Media: How To Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter under GDPR

Who does GDPR effect?

Organizations located both within and outside of the EU which offer goods or services to, or monitor the behavior of, EU data subjects. It also applies to all companies processing and holding the personal data of data subjects residing in the European Union, regardless of the company’s location.  

GDPR applies to anyone who lives in the EU, as well as to EU nationals.  It actually expands the rights of our European-resident members with regards to their data.

We collect personal information at DA to be able to contact our members and inform them about voting and other issues.  

How does GDPR apply to DA?

GDPR expands the existing definition of personal data and lays out new standards regarding the ownership, use, and protection of this data.   In other words:

Personal data is defined as anything that can identify an individual. Names, email addresses, physical addresses, phone numbers, credit card details, or a pseudonym, among other things. 

Under GDPR, EU residents, regardless of their nationality, own their personal data and can therefore control how it may be used.  For example the membership information DA is given could be called Uncle Jack's  pair of gloves, his hat, and his coat.  Jack has left these items with us and assumes we'll take care of them, and not lend the gloves to the next-door neighbor, use the hat as a lampshade or the coat as a rug.  It's our responsibility to respect and not mishandle our member data.

One of the most significant changes for individuals is the right to be forgotten.  When someone asks to be deleted from the database, their request must be granted within 30 days, and all information we hold in our system about them must be deleted.  We do this anyway, but the membership administrators in each country committee should be aware of this and not permit any requests to accumulate.

If you have a question about our membership information and how to deal with it, please ask the DA IT Team at: (See /wiki/spaces/MC/pages/3458239733 for guidance on how to request a member deletion.)

Articles and References:

GDPR-related Issues and Queries:

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