Business Article Critique IIShaun Webbs
Slide: Drug Tests
Narration: Drug tests have long been legal for those employees working in safety-related jobs. In other
jobs, drug use has been proven causally related to increase worker’s compensation claims and illnesses,
among other issues like decreased productivity. This has caused the courts to allow such monitoring as a
condition of employment.
Narration: Privacy as it relates to employees is an interesting topic. Generally, if a company owns the
equipment, it establishes how and when employees can use the equipment. In fact, most employers
require employees to consent to monitor their computers, emails, and internet usage. While the current
law does allow employers to monitor employees, it does not grant absolute authority to do so. Under the
ECPA, which we will study, employers are not allowed to monitor employee personal communication,
including communication through the employer’s equipment, unless the employee consents to it. In other
words, monitoring personal communication is only allowed when an employee is both aware of it and also
agrees to it.
Slide: Other Off-Work Acts
Narration: Moonlighting is legal as long as it does not interfere with an employee’s other job. Union
activity is protected, as well.
Narration: Pursuant to federal law, employers in hiring cannot ask whether one has a disability. However,
they can ask whether one can perform the job with or without accommodation. Following a job offer, an
employer can condition the offer on passing a medical exam, as long as all entering employees for that
job category are also required to pass the exam. Certain state laws, like California, protect employees
Slide: Social Media
Narration: More and more employers are asking prospective employees for their username and
passwords to their social media accounts. Employers want to know as much as possible about their
potential new employees, including how they conduct themselves during off-hours. Do you think this is
ethical? Some employers attempt to continue this monitoring even after employees are hired. However,
this is a new and fertile area of litigation, and because of the rise of such monitoring, some states have
begun to enact laws protecting employees in this area.