This means that your employer should inform you that you might be affected by workplace surveillance.
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Monitoring without giving notice is only permitted in very exceptional circumstances. An employer can do so if they suspect criminal activity is taking place, and if telling staff about the monitoring would put the investigation at risk. Moreover, this type of monitoring has to stop once the investigation is complete. Article 8 of the Human Rights Act protects your right to live your life privately and enjoy family life without government interference. It also means that your personal information should not be shared without your permission except in extraordinary circumstances.
However, Article 8 stipulates that employers need to balance the right to privacy of employees with their interest to keep staff under observation. What if your employer installed CCTV cameras in the toilet?
It is only regulated by the Data Protection Act. To be able to monitor you in such a way, the employer would need to prove that they are doing it for prevention of crime. Any data must be gathered for legitimate purposes and cannot be used for any other reason than the one for which it is originally intended.
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All surveillance that an employer carries out needs to be justifiable. What can you do if you believe your employer is violating your rights?
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This should be decided on a case-by-case basis. Maybe the situation will resolve if you confront your employer and see how they justify their actions? Understandably, this might not always be possible, so here are your other options:. If the company is monitoring the number of sent emails only, without looking at their content, UK law probably allows for this. In theory, this means that if you lose your job , you could bring a claim of unfair dismissal.
However, this might be difficult to achieve in practice.
Under UK law, there are important criteria that an employee needs to satisfy to be eligible to lodge an unfair dismissal claim. For example, you need to be an employee under a contract of employment for at least two years. Winthrop has a word of warning. Also, the reparation for unfair dismissal is capped to 52 weeks gross salary.
Many employees whose rights might have been breached might opt not to do anything for purely practical reasons. Now it is going to become an issue for high-level workers , working from home in education or IT or procurement. This means that the surge in remote working could have an upside in terms of workplace surveillance. Follow Welcome to the Jungle on Facebook and subscribe to our newsletter to receive our best articles. Receive advice and information on new hiring companies directly in your inbox each week.
Almost all employers are eligible for union organization—there is no minimum size or type of industry required for a union to represent employees. However, there are strategies employers can use to minimize the likelihood that a union would be accepted by employees. Employees join unions because of their dissatisfaction with how management treats employees and a belief that the union can make conditions in the workplace better.
While pay and benefits are often hot topics in union organizing tactics, employees are most influenced to join a union when the company is perceived to be unfair, unresponsive or offering substandard working conditions to employees. Strategies that help discourage union acceptance are:. A workplace that fosters good relationships between management and employees and addresses employee concerns is much less likely to force employees to union representation for assistance.
So what happens when the union shows up at your door? Just be careful not to engage in any unfair labor practices. The acronym TIPS can help remind employers not to:. Employers can and should talk to employees about why they think the workplace can do without the union.
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Emphasize the policies, practices and culture that are already in place that make your company a great place to work. Let your employees hear your side of the story so that they can make an educated decision about how bringing a union into the workplace will affect them. The bottom line is that if you communicate openly and honestly with employees and your workplace is truly one that fosters good employee relations with fair and consistent policies and practices, employees should find little value in union representation.
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Page Content. Strategies that help discourage union acceptance are: Fair and consistent policies and practices. Open door management policies.
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Competitive pay and benefits. Employee trust and recognition. The acronym TIPS can help remind employers not to: T hreaten—never threaten to retaliate against employees by terminating them or reducing pay or benefits. I nterrogate—do not interrogate employees about their activities or activities of co-workers. P romise—do not promise anything to employees, such as promotions or benefits, in exchange for not supporting the union.