button Vol. 5
No. 5
Fall 2000

line INSIDE line

Plan To Add 1 Million Union Members
line NLRB Regulation of Nonunion Conduct
line E-mail can lead to legal quagmire
line NLRB -
news about "salting"

line Violence
Top Security Concern in 2000

line Briefs


Braun Consulting News
News on Personnel, Labor Relations and Benefits

See our Archive Pages for Back Issues of Braun Consulting News!

button E-mail policies can lead to legal quagmire.

Employer's e-mail policies (or lack of) can land them in some hot water with the legal system, as has been discussed in earlier issues of this newsletter.

This potential for legal problems has been demonstrated recently by the Whitehouse, which has been under investigation for its e-mail policies and alleged abuses. President Clinton is having all of his and Vice President Gore's e-mails reviewed for violations of the law.

If it can happen in the Whitehouse, it can happen to you!

Any employer who uses e-mail must have a well-written e-mail, or 'technology policy' to help avoid legal problems.

These problems can arise when a wrong keystroke can send a racially or sexually offensive joke to dozens of workers... or when an employee is disciplined for broadcasting union membership solicitations. A supervisor who installs new software to read subordinates' stored communications is yet another situation that may start new legal battles for an employer.

These situations can lead to charges of harassment or discrimination, invasion of privacy claims, or collisions with unions over communications that might be protected under the National Labor Relations Act.

A newer issue that has developed is creating an appropriate policy that ensures company access to the electronic files of telecommuters using their own computer equipment. Preventing inappropriate e-mail use that can leave your company vulnerable to lawsuits is another tricky problem that must be solved.

If you would like more detailed information on e-mail policies Click Here to review our earlier story E-mail - the 'Wild Wild West' of Today's Workplace.

NLRB - news about "salting" Next Page

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