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I work in a medical field. Very non-invasive proceedure.

I work in a medical...
I work in a medical field. Very non-invasive proceedure. Our supervisor has been for sometime, forcing us to video and audio tape us setting up our patients. There are nurses passing out narcotics and every hospital has one or two that pocket those narcatics. There are people sticking needles in peoples arms and not getting video or audio taped...the list goes on.
We are in the state of Washington and it is my understanding that this is one of 12 states that requires "all parties" involved in conversation/interaction, to give consent for being audio and video recorded. Now the patient has signed a waiver/agreement upon entry of our lab to be audio/video recorded. We as employees have never given consent for this. It is not even in our policy and proceedure manual to do this, but our supervisor threatens diciplinary action against us if we don't.
What are my rights as an employee here, who never gave consent in the state of Washington to be audio or video taped?
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6/21/2013
wallstreetfighter
wallstreetfighter, Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 17,253
Experience: 14 years exp, General counsel for National Corp. firms, Hostos College instructor, Represented employees in discrimination lawsuits
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wallstreetfighter :

Hello I am a licensed attorney here to help you with your question, please review my response and do not hesitate to ask for clarification

wallstreetfighter :

Is there a sign or notice, stating that a video tape is being made in the office?

wallstreetfighter :

Do all parties have notice of the employers action?

Customer:

No there is not a sign that a video tape is being made in the office. All parties do here at our clinic are aware of the supervisors action/demand, non of us want to be video and audio taped.

wallstreetfighter :

Do they video tape private conversations of employees as well?

Customer:

No. Just the employee/patient interaction. We do sleep studies. They are audio and video taping the proceedure to get them ready for the patients sleep study.

Customer:

No other proceedure in this hospital is getting audio or video taped except for us.

wallstreetfighter :






RCW 9.73.030



(1) Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, it shall be unlawful for any individual, partnership, corporation, association, or the state of Washington, its agencies, and political subdivisions to intercept, or record any:

(a) Private communication transmitted by telephone, telegraph, radio, or other device between two or more individuals between points within or without the state by any device electronic or otherwise designed to record and/or transmit said communication regardless how such device is powered or actuated, without first obtaining the consent of all the participants in the communication;

(b) Private conversation, by any device electronic or otherwise designed to record or transmit such conversation regardless how the device is powered or actuated without first obtaining the consent of all the persons engaged in the conversation.

(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1) of this section, wire communications or conversations (a) of an emergency nature, such as the reporting of a fire, medical emergency, crime, or disaster, or (b) which convey threats of extortion, blackmail, bodily harm, or other unlawful requests or demands, or (c) which occur anonymously or repeatedly or at an extremely inconvenient hour, or (d) which relate to communications by a hostage holder or barricaded person as defined in RCW 70.85.100, whether or not conversation ensues, may be recorded with the consent of one party to the conversation.

(3) Where consent by all parties is needed pursuant to this chapter, consent shall be considered obtained whenever one party has announced to all other parties engaged in the communication or conversation, in any reasonably effective manner, that such communication or conversation is about to be recorded or transmitted: PROVIDED, That if the conversation is to be recorded that said announcement shall also be recorded.

(4) An employee of any regularly published newspaper, magazine, wire service, radio station, or television station acting in the course of bona fide news gathering duties on a full-time or contractual or part-time basis, shall be deemed to have consent to record and divulge communications or conversations otherwise prohibited by this chapter if the consent is expressly given or if the recording or transmitting device is readily apparent or obvious to the speakers. Withdrawal of the consent after the communication has been made shall not prohibit any such employee of a newspaper, magazine, wire service, or radio or television station from divulging the communication or conversation.


 


[1986 c 38 § 1; 1985 c 260 § 2; 1977 ex.s. c 363 § 1; 1967 ex.s. c 93 § 1.]

wallstreetfighter :

The employers actions would be legal in the State, I have read the consent laws,

wallstreetfighter :

it requires consent for "private communications",

wallstreetfighter :

in the workplace communications at work are not private,

wallstreetfighter :

if the communications at work are considered private, the employer may be in violation,

Customer:

Ok, so basically there is nothing we as employees can say or do about this. Well, atleast I have a job I guess. It's just irritating that we are the only ones in the entire hospital that this is happening to, and we are about the most least invasive proceedure here.

wallstreetfighter :

however, the law in WA only requires the employer to give notice, so an announcement would be allowed,

wallstreetfighter :

In regards XXXXX XXXXX action the patients consent is critical and should be made in writing, as they may have privacy and HIPPA complaints against the employer,

wallstreetfighter :

you can satisfy the consent requirement by "announc[ing] to all other parties engaged in the communication or conversation, in any reasonably effective manner, that such communication or conversation is about to be recorded or transmitted," so long as this announcement is also recorded.Wash. Rev. Code § 9.73.030(3)

wallstreetfighter :

It is clear under the law,

wallstreetfighter :

that if the employer was video taping places where employees would be engaging in private conversations, such as outside the office,

wallstreetfighter :

or where phone calls are made consent would have to be given,

Customer:

Well, I suppose her demand of us doing this would be the announcement. And patients do sign a consent form. I thank you for your time. You have answered my question with excellent service. I have to finish my work shift here, but I was unclear on what we as employees here have researched and read and you did a great job of helping me better understand our situation here. $30 well spent. Thank you for time and have a fantastic day.

wallstreetfighter :

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to ask.

wallstreetfighter :

Good luck, and make a copy of the law, as most people are not aware of the language which limits the law to "private" conv

wallstreetfighter
wallstreetfighter, Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 17,253
Experience: 14 years exp, General counsel for National Corp. firms, Hostos College instructor, Represented employees in discrimination lawsuits
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wallstreetfighter
wallstreetfighter, Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 17,253
17,253 Satisfied Customers
Experience: 14 years exp, General counsel for National Corp. firms, Hostos College instructor, Represented employees in discrimination lawsuits

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