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Privacy concerns Florida

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  • Privacy concerns Florida

    I work for a company that just started using audio surveillance outside our office to protect our safety in case we have a confrontation with a client (security job). I heard a rumor that they will start using audio in our private office without our knowledge. I wrote management a cease and desist letter and they claim they do not use audio inside our offices, only outside. We never signed paperwork saying we are being recorded at all. I requested a form granting permission and management has not provided me with one yet. Is verbal notification of audio surveillance legal?

    Also I heard from a coworker that I was caught doing something against policy and will be written up for it. I asked management if this was true and they said yes. What is my recourse for management discussing disciplinary action about me with other coworkers?

  • #2
    I can answer the 2nd question. You have no recourse unless you are covered under a union and then it depends on the CBA. Management can generally discuss your disciplinary action with anyone they want. Unless they have a policy of confidentiality. But even then, there is no law that states that can't break their own policy or that they have to abide by it. Many times, they would question other employees to investigate whatever you did wrong. If it was a person that wasn't involved and it was just gossip, then that is a bad business practice, but not illegal. Some employers want other employees to know as a warning to them.

    As to the first question, at this point, I would assume they are taping everything. Can't tell you if that is legal. I know they can tape your interactions over the phone with clients. And it might all get back to whether you have a "reasonable expectation of privacy" in an employer-owned workplace. Your best bet is to speak and act in a manner that you know will NOT get you in trouble if your employer was listening....that is be professional at work.

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    • #3
      Thank you. The incident in question only involved me and something I was doing that was caught on camera (i was on my cell phone to my son's babysitter). It said in my employment paperwork that the cameras are there for our safety. I know they can watch us but I thought listening in on us was violating federal wiretapping laws. I can't find anything specific about it online. I might just call a lawyer.

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      • #4
        You have zero right to prohibit your employer from using video on their premises. The only exception is in places like restrooms or locker rooms where there is an expectation of privacy. Video is allowed whether you like it or not. Audio is the only sticky wicket and that depends upon state law. Your state requires that both parties be informed that audio is being recorded, however, I see nothing in the law which requires this notice be in any particular format. Demanding a form is unreasonable. http://www.dmlp.org/legal-guide/florida-recording-law
        I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

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        • #5
          Writing a cease and desist letter based on a rumour! Instead of just ignoring the rumour like a mature adult, or at most asking your boss if this was true, like a polite mature adult! Wow what a 'tude!

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