Terms & Conditions

Terms and Conditions of Use for the Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community (Updated 27/11/2023)

Introduction

Our Online Bereavement Community is a place to share experiences, get things off your chest, ask questions and chat to people who understand.

We want to make sure that the community is a safe, welcoming, and supportive space for everyone. We’ve created these Terms and Conditions to explain how you can help us do this, and how we will support you to use the community safely. We ask that all users agree to follow these Terms and Conditions, as well as our Community Guidelines.

Although you should read our Terms and Conditions in full, here are the most important bits for you to be aware of.

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Who and what this community is for

  • The Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community is for anyone over the age of 18 to get support with grief and/or the end-of-life.

  • You must comply with our Community Guidelines and Terms and Conditions when you use this site.

  • The site is for peer support. It should not be used as a substitute for professional advice. You should consult your doctor, or other relevant professionals, before making any decisions that could affect you or others. We will remove any content which we deem to be medical advice.

How we moderate the community

  • The community is moderated from 9am - 5pm and 8pm -10pm weekdays, and 8am 10am and 7pm -10pm on weekends and bank holidays.

  • We try to read everything that is posted publicly. We don’t read private messages unless there is a safeguarding concern and / or a user has flagged a private message to our moderation team.

  • Our moderators are here to help facilitate a safe and supportive environment for you to give and receive support relating to end of life and bereavement. We will also signpost to other resources that we think may be helpful.

  • Our moderators are not counsellors – we can’t provide crisis support. Posts which detail suicidal plans or intentions will be removed from the community, but we will contact you to signpost you to appropriate services.

  • If you need urgent help, please go to A&E, or call 999 if you feel that you are at immediate risk.

  • If you are worried about anything or anyone on the site, please report it directly to the Sue Ryder team by using the “flag” function or by sending us a private message. This is the quickest way to make us aware of something that needs our attention.

  • Once you have flagged something to us, we will take a look and get back to you to let you know that we have received your flag. We cannot go into detail about any action we have taken in order to protect the privacy of our users.

  • We will moderate any content that falls outside the boundaries of our community guidelines by removing content and providing feedback to you.

Your privacy and safety

We encourage users to keep communications within the community because we have staff and moderators who work to keep the community safe and supportive. We’re unable to moderate anything outside of this platform. This means that when communication is taken offline, or outside of the community, we can no longer keep you and our members safe.

  • The community is public and it’s not necessary to become a member in order to read posts. Please be careful with your personal information and be mindful of sharing information or photos that may identify you.

  • Don’t use your email address as your username and do not post your contact details on the community (we will remove them) - and of course please do not share anyone else’s personal information.

  • Think about your safety if you ever arrange to meet people you have met on any online community. If you are doing this, always tell someone else about your plans.

  • Staying anonymous is the best way to protect your privacy. We will remove things that could identify you, such as details of where you live, contact information, social media profiles etc. It is however okay for you to use a photo of yourself or your loved one as your profile image if you are comfortable doing so.

  • It’s also okay to share contact information through private messaging. However, if you receive unsolicited messages asking for your details, or feel under pressure from another user to provide them, please flag the message to us or contact us at online.community@sueryder.org

  • We will only share the information you provide to us with other people or organisations in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

  • Confidentiality and privacy are fundamental to the community. However, there are some circumstances where it is our policy to pass on information. These include:

  • If we suspect a child may be at risk from harm.
  • If a user is at serious risk of harm, either from themselves or others.
  • If a user threatens or abuses our moderators, staff, other community users or named users of the public (e.g. medical professionals).

For legal reasons, we keep confidential records of any safeguarding incidences.

Banning accounts and withdrawing access to the site

  • Where possible, our moderators will work with you to provide feedback and to help you continue using the site safely.

  • If we are concerned about your use of the site, or you persist to break our Community Guidelines and/or Terms and Conditions, we reserve the right to withdraw your access to the site with immediate effect (with or without providing feedback, depending on the severity of the risk to other community users). This may be temporary or permanent, depending on the reason for withdrawal.

  • When your access is withdrawn, you can email the team at online.community@sueryder.org to discuss your suspension.

  • The decision of Sue Ryder is final.

  • If you register a new account for the purposes of evading a ban, it will be banned without warning.

Full terms and conditions

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  1. Purpose of the Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community
  2. Conduct that we expect from users
  3. Conversations and private messages
  4. Moderation and termination of service
  5. Privacy, your data and data protection
  6. Notice of action and changes to terms and conditions
  7. Exclusion of liability
  8. Definitions

1. Purpose of the Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community

1.1 The Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community provides peer support to anybody who is caring for someone at the end of their life and to anybody in need of bereavement support.

1.2 The community is moderated by Sue Ryder. Although we endeavour to read every public post, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or integrity of content in the community.

1.3 This site facilitates peer support; it should not be used as a substitute for professional advice. You should consult your doctor, or other relevant professional, before making any decisions that could affect you or others.

1.4 The Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community staff and its users cannot provide mental health crisis support. We will remove such content and signpost you to the appropriate services.

If Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community moderators are concerned that you, a child, or vulnerable adult are at immediate risk, it is our policy to contact the emergency services. Where appropriate, we will inform you that we have done this. For legal reasons, we keep confidential records of any safeguarding incidents.

2. Conduct that we expect from users

2.1 This site is for users over the age of 18 – some content may be inappropriate for those under the age of 18. Users under the age of 18 will have their accounts suspended and if you are under 18, you agree not to use the site.

2.2 Participation in, and use of this site is at the user’s own risk.

2.3 All views and information, whether publicly posted or privately transmitted are individual and not the views, policy, or advice of Sue Ryder. You understand and acknowledge that content is the sole responsibility of the person from which such content originated.

2.4 The use of the community for gathering information for surveys, articles, research studies, or similar, is prohibited unless prior permission has been given by Sue Ryder.

2.5 You agree not to participate in mischievous or malicious behaviour which causes damage or may cause damage to Sue Ryder, this site or any of the computer systems on which this site resides.

2.6 By using this site you agree to these terms and conditions. If you do not agree to these terms and conditions, Sue Ryder reserves the right to prohibit you from using this site.

3. Conversations, posts, and private messages

3.1 Content that is posted to this site or otherwise included in its private messaging systems, including your choice of username, must follow these conditions.

3.2 Posts must not be obscene, defamatory, or libellous, inflammatory, vulgar, sexually orientated, racial, political, hateful, threatening, contain methods of suicide and/or self-harm, or be in violation of any laws or good morals and practice or personally abusive. You hereby undertake to indemnify and hold harmless Sue Ryder against all costs and expenses from any such actions by you.

3.3 Posts containing personal contact details (full names, email addresses/links, phone numbers, or postal addresses) are not allowed and will be removed from the community.

3.4 Posts containing personal endorsement of products and services that may be of benefit to our users may be permitted. Posts, usernames, and profile information deemed to contain commercial advertising, and unsolicited posts for the purpose of advertising a product or service, are not permitted on this site.

3.5 Posts advertising items, whether for sale or donation, are not permitted on this site. This includes offers of second-hand equipment.

3.6 Posts must not be excessively repeated intentionally. Doing so may result in the removal of the posts and the banning of your account.

3.7 Posts must be written in English, as we are not able to moderate and review posts posted in other languages.

3.8 Posts must not infringe or violate another party’s rights (including, but not limited to, copyright and/or intellectual property rights, and rights of privacy and publicity).

3.9 Please do not post medical, legal, or financial information in an advisory capacity. We cannot vouch for the expertise of anyone on the community. Sue Ryder aims to remove such content but has no obligation to do so.

3.10 Posts discouraging users from seeking relevant professional advice (legal, medical, or otherwise) are not permitted and will be removed.

3.11 Please do not promote, advocate or post unsubstantiated claims about alternative or complementary therapies on this site.

3.12 Users are welcome to share how their religion, faith or beliefs are helpful to them in a respectful and constructive manner. Users must not tell other users what to believe, attack the beliefs of others, or use the forums for proselytising.

3.13 Please ensure that any posts or links that you post are relevant to the discussion. Irrelevant content may be removed. Sue Ryder is not responsible for the content of external websites and may remove external links without further notice.

3.14 Sue Ryder may from time to time edit or remove posts that are contrary to these terms and conditions or not constructive to the overall purpose and mission of Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community and/or Sue Ryder.

3.15 You agree to respect the privacy and wishes of those users whom you have been privately messaging. You must not pass on details to third parties (except Sue Ryder) without permission.

3.16 When sending or receiving a private message you acknowledge they may be viewed by Sue Ryder for the purposes of investigating a safeguarding issue, or a breach of these terms and conditions.

3.17 You can edit posts within 10 minutes of publishing them if no-one has responded to it. After that time, you may contact Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community staff to request we edit it for you, but Sue Ryder is under no automatic obligation to edit posts.

4. Moderation and termination of service

4.1 Sue Ryder has the right, but no obligation, to remove, edit, move, or close any post or conversation for any reason.

4.2 Sue Ryder is not obliged to enter into any correspondence regarding the moderation of content on the Online Bereavement Community.

4.3 Sue Ryder has the right to modify or delete any or all information relating to a user, including the closure of that user’s account, without prior notice or reason.

4.4 Sue Ryder reserves the right to terminate the service (ban the accounts) of users who repeatedly infringe our Community Guidelines and/or Terms and Conditions. Where appropriate, we will endeavour to discuss this with you before action is taken.

4.5 Registering new accounts for the purposes of evading a ban is not permitted and such accounts will be removed without notice.

4.6 Posts discussing moderator actions are not permitted. Users who wish to discuss moderator actions should email online.community@sueryder.org

4.7 In cases of dispute, the decision of Sue Ryder shall be final.

5. Privacy, your Data and Data Protection

5.1 In order to use the Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community, you are asked to provide personal data in order to operate the service. By using the Online Bereavement Community, you agree that Sue Ryder can use your data for this purpose. For more information on what data is collected and how it is used please read our Privacy Policy. To find out more about how cookies are used, please read our Cookies Policy.

5.2 Your data is kept in line with the expectation that users can use the service continuously. You can request that your account is closed and your data removed by emailing online.community@sueryder.org.

5.3 Sue Ryder may receive requests to use posts shared on the Online Bereavement Community on our social media channels, in website content and in publications. We will always endeavor to seek your consent if we want to use your post. However, if you wish to be excluded from these requests, please contact the Online Community Manager by emailing online.community@sueryder.org

5.4 You can contact us to ask us to amend information held about you which you believe to be incorrect or incomplete (e.g. the email address associated with your account). You can contact us by emailing online.community@sueryder.org

6. Notice of Action and Changes to Terms & Conditions

6.1 Where a breach of these terms and conditions occurs Sue Ryder reserves the right to take such action as it sees fit.

6.2 Any reference to third-party organisations and their websites, product/s, service/s or employees does not imply endorsement by Sue Ryder.

6.3 The terms and conditions of this agreement are subject to change by Sue Ryder at any time. Any user’s usage of this site following changes shall indicate the user’s acceptance of the new agreement.

7. Exclusion of Liability

7.1 Sue Ryder accepts no liability whatsoever for the content of any third party or external website to which the website includes links.

7.2 Sue Ryder excludes to the maximum extent permissible at law all liability for any injuries, losses, costs, claims, expenses, or damages you may incur as a result of using the website.

7.3 The foregoing terms and conditions are subject to English law and the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts. If any provisions of these terms and conditions are held to be invalid or unenforceable, the validity or enforceability of the remaining provisions shall not be affected.

8. Definitions

8.1 ‘this site’ refers to all Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community pages on the community.sueryder.org sub-domain.

8.2 ‘Sue Ryder’ includes any person or organisation involved in any part of the design, development, operation, marketing, promotion, or other similar aspects of this site.

8.3 ‘user’, ‘member’ and ‘you’ refer to any person viewing or interacting with this site.

8.4 ‘content’ refers to any text, photograph or other image presented on this site to users by either Sue Ryder or users.

8.5 ‘posts’ includes all public posts, private messages, and profile user information.

If you have any comments, concerns, or complaints about Sue Ryder Online Bereavement Community or any of its users, please email us at online.community@sueryder.org