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CCTV Advice needed please!!!


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Hi all,

I work for a large firm, in the Hospitality industry, i wont give the name or clues as it would be instantly recognizable, and could lead to problems for me.

We have had CCTV installed in the public areas for some time, with the appropriate signage, etc.

because of a suspected number of recent stock thefts, the management have now said they are installing additional cameras in the private staff areas.

These include the staff room, where numerous staff get changed into uniform ( company policy forbids staff from wearing uniform outside of work, so have to get changed)(when confronted about this, management respond by saying that there is a lockable staff toilet to get changed in, (2 toilet cubicles, 1 male and 1 female) but when there is possibly 8-10 staff starting a shift there is no room for us all to get changed, so we have to use the staff room. as company policy also forbids staff from being on site for longer than 20 mins before your shift starts or 20 mins after shift ends, we cant stagger use of toilets either as there can be upwards of 16 staff at a shift change to all get changed either into or out of uniform.

Numerous staff have requested that the new camera be installed in the kitchen area as this is where the stock is being stolen from, but management have disagreed, as those responsible are believed to take stock out of the kitchen to consume in the staff room or the toilet area.

I really need advice about this, as i believe this is an invasion of privacy, yet i understand the need to catch the culprits, installing in the kitchen would to my mind have 2 results, 1, Deterrent,some of the culprits would not be stupid enough to steal on camera knowing the camera is there, 2, capture, those stupid enough to do so would get caught.

I dont understand the need to install a camera in the staff room as this infringes on personal time that we could resonably expect to remain private.

Any advice would be appreciated folks,

Cheers

Cold

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The employer is on dodgy ground and you might want to take this up with the ICO. CCTV should never be used in areas where the employee should be able to enjoy a degree of privacy, except where serious crime is suspected and even there, the images should only be used to investigate an incident, and should not be routinely monitored.

 

The ICO has some useful guidelines on their WEBSITE and these may help you to formulate a grievance against the proposed installation and a list of awkward questions to ask your employer about how the CCTV will be used, who will have access to the recordings and in what circumstances, do they propose to provide additional, non-filemed areas in which you may be permitted to change, potential breaches of the Human Rights Act - quite an extensive list.

 

If you don't like the answers, then take it up with the ICO. Seems like a sledgehammer to crack a nut!

Any advice given is done so on the assumption that recipients will also take professional advice where appropriate.

 

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Hello there. I'm very sorry that you and your colleagues are going through this. Sidewinder knows far more than I do, but to me the employer's actions sound completely OTT and privacy is important, as well as dignity etc.

 

My best, HB

Edited by honeybee13
Clairty plus I wish I could type properly.

Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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I agree with Sidewinder but I would stick with the arguments around changing. The argument that a camera infringes on "personal time" is weak, and given the arguments that stock is being stolen and consumed in the staff room is unlikely to impress the ICO. Breaks, per se, are not "personal time" (the employer can set rules about things during breaks, so you are still legally under their control in such periods) and the employer could easily argue that these times when staff are on their premises and on break are the most vulnerable periods. However, the argument about changing is solid - there is an absolute right to privacy for dressing / undressing.

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I am a barrister specialising in employment law, and only represent employees. My advice on employment issues is advice - not legal opinion - and is based only on the facts you provide. If you want an accurate assessment of your case and prospects, you should get legal opinion from a lawyer - not a public forum. Anything I tell you is for guidance only, and is based on my experience of the law in the context of what details you provide.

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Sounds like all the affected workers should be complaining to a union so that the union could address the issue with the employer, that way some sort of protection for the individual is achieved. Unless none of you belong to a union of course !!

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I'd look at the welfare regs for changing before trying to pursue via the DPA/ICO ;)

 

Google welfare regs changing rooms as i can't link here

 

What facilities do I need to provide for changing and storing clothing?

 

If the work activity requires your employees to change into and wear specialist clothing (overalls, a uniform, thermal clothing etc), then you must provide enough changing rooms for the number of people expected to use them.

Where a changing room is provided it should:

be readily accessible;

contain, or lead directly to, clothing storage and washing facilities;

provide seating;

provide a means for hanging clothes _ a hook or peg may be sufficient;

ensure the privacy of the user.

 

once you ascertain if your employer meets the requirements and also if they are stating people can change in the toilets correctly the cctv argument becomes easier as they can monitor anything apart from "private" areas as stated above.

 

The best way to back them off is via their possibly inappropriate facilities not the cctv argument

 

I would also not consider changing in a toilet cubicle reasonable

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Hi all,

I work for a large firm, in the Hospitality industry, i wont give the name or clues as it would be instantly recognizable, and could lead to problems for me.

We have had CCTV installed in the public areas for some time, with the appropriate signage, etc.

because of a suspected number of recent stock thefts, the management have now said they are installing additional cameras in the private staff areas.

These include the staff room, where numerous staff get changed into uniform ( company policy forbids staff from wearing uniform outside of work, so have to get changed)(when confronted about this, management respond by saying that there is a lockable staff toilet to get changed in, (2 toilet cubicles, 1 male and 1 female) but when there is possibly 8-10 staff starting a shift there is no room for us all to get changed, so we have to use the staff room. as company policy also forbids staff from being on site for longer than 20 mins before your shift starts or 20 mins after shift ends, we cant stagger use of toilets either as there can be upwards of 16 staff at a shift change to all get changed either into or out of uniform.

Numerous staff have requested that the new camera be installed in the kitchen area as this is where the stock is being stolen from, but management have disagreed, as those responsible are believed to take stock out of the kitchen to consume in the staff room or the toilet area.

I really need advice about this, as i believe this is an invasion of privacy, yet i understand the need to catch the culprits, installing in the kitchen would to my mind have 2 results, 1, Deterrent,some of the culprits would not be stupid enough to steal on camera knowing the camera is there, 2, capture, those stupid enough to do so would get caught.

I dont understand the need to install a camera in the staff room as this infringes on personal time that we could resonably expect to remain private.

Any advice would be appreciated folks,

Cheers

Cold

 

Intimidation from the employer.

Definitely.

 

C'mon guys, employers do have the right to take care of their premises, but all within reasonable precautions.

CCTV in changing rooms, hahaha! not inside of the lockers really? LOL

 

There is a possibility the CCTV can be positioned facing the entrance to the changing rooms. That is the furthest the cameras can go.

Otherwise, I am sure there are some other means to catch the thief.

CCTV in changing rooms is just employer's laziness... to think. Mainly.

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