In each instance, the employer's property rights and right to manage the workplace has been weighed against employees' privacy interests.Those privacy interests find some support in privacy legislation and Canada's , where applicable.There has been considerable debate, particularly in Ontario, regarding whether there exists a freestanding legal right of privacy in workplaces.Despite this debate, in English Canada a general consensus has begun to emerge amongst arbitrators that more intrusive methods of employee monitoring such as video surveillance will only be permitted if it is justified and reasonable in the circumstances.But countless battles have since been waged over the use of video surveillance cameras in and around the workplace. The use of hidden cameras at the worksite as part of an investigation has also been the subject of much controversy.By far the most fever-pitched battles have been over the surveillance of production work, monitoring employees for disciplinary reasons or conducting surveillance of social or sensitive areas of the workplace.I guess some things are too close to home for some though.
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In Quebec, it is important to note that both the Quebec Civil Code and the Quebec Charter of Rights and Freedoms contain specific legislative provisions which protect the right of privacy and more precisely, the right not to be subject to certain forms of intrusive observation.
The essential criteria analyzed by arbitrators is whether the employee has a reasonable expectation to privacy in the circumstances.
A data controller needs to be able to justify the obtaining and use of personal data by means of a CCTV system.
A system used to control the perimeter of a building for security purposes will usually be easy to justify.