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Staff meeting recording by employee.

Discussion in 'Employment, Labor, Work Issues' started by just3bears, Apr 26, 2012.

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  1. just3bears

    just3bears Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Can I legally record a staff meeting between employees and employer in the state of Minnesota?
     
  2. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

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    I assume that you are either the employee or the employer. If not, post back because the answer may change.

    If you are asking whether you'll get thrown in jail for doing so, no, you won't. MN law only requires that one party to the conversation be aware and consent to the taping.

    However, on the assumption that you are the employee, know that just because the law won't take action against you doesn't mean your employer can't. If you do not have permission for the taping, you CAN be fired for doing so without permission and the firing will the quite legal, EVEN THOUGH you will not have violated any laws by doing so.
     
  3. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    Well,here's your problem, OP.

    CBG, gave you very good advice.

    I'll add, because you can do something, it doesn't mean you should.

    I usually tell my clients, to take notes. That's a good way to remember and memorialize what was said.

    In your post, you ask about recording employees and employer. That implies more than one employee will be present. Now, you need to be even more careful. I suggest not to record conversations. That's a sign of a broken down relationship. Maybe you'd be better off seeking new employment? Just a thought.

    See an excerpt from a well written article on your query.




    Sent from my iPad3 using Tapatalk HD
     
  4. just3bears

    just3bears Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I am the employee. In past staff meetings I have been interrogated and defamed in front of all present. Unfortunately, or by design, our head director never attends these meetings. When I discuss this with the head director, she says she will look into it. The next day, I receive an e-mail stating what I have reported to her is inaccurate, regardless of my written notes.
    I know I am in the right. If been in my field of work for over 25yrs. And though I've met with much contempt from a hand full of employees, the majority are aware of my skill and value. I work in the hospitality industry and am known throughout the city as a very pleasant and professional employee.
    I am 47yrs old a family man, and live in the same house that I lived in during my elementary school years. Finding a new job, as Army Judge, below, has suggested, in the small but prominent city I live in, that will accommodate my wife's job and children's responsibilities, Is something I have not been able to do. Again 90% or more of the employees at my workplace absolutely love and respect me and my work ethic.
    I am a male of mixed heritage. I take my job very seriously. Other than an occasional beer while eating spicy foods, I do not consume alcohol on or off the clock. The people whom have issue with me are caucasian, female, and are in, or related to, those in management. They openly consume and even brag about being intoxicated while in the workplace.
    Also my father served in world war II, was a professional boxer and wrestler back when wrestling was real. He was also very active in state and local politics and was admired by all who knew him. So, I hope Army Judge understands why I have never considered my self a quitter or runner.

    A side note. I never been questioned at, or fired from any establishment I've ever been employed.
     
  5. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

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    The fact remains that while recording the staff meeting, unknown to anyone else and without permission, does not violate any MN or Federal laws, you are not protected from termination if your manager or the employer decides to take offense at your doing so. Your heritage, your father's history, and the fact that you have not been questioned or terminated (yet) does not change this. You CAN be fired and it WOULD be legal.

    I don't know that they WOULD; I am explaining that they CAN.
     
  6. just3bears

    just3bears Law Topic Starter New Member

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    No secrets

    I would be stating , "I am using a voice recorder to take notes at this staff meeting this evening." I would then ask if anyone has any objections. I would then give my own consent, and request the consent of my personal staff, which I already know I would receive. I never said anything about doing any recording in secret. I apologize if I gave that impression.
    I have no fear of losing my job. I'm just trying to keep my actions legal, as I am a city employee. My personal information has nothing to do with the legality of the situation. Nor, does it have to do with any concern of being fired. My statement was a simple insight to the fact that I was not raised to run from conflict, when I know I am in the right.
     
  7. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

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    Nothing you've said above changes the answer. You CAN be fired for recording the meeting without permission, and I am not talking solely about permission of the participants in the meeting. It doesn't matter if it was done in the open or not; if your boss or his boss or the CEO decide to be offended by your use of a recording, then you CAN be fired for recording it, EVEN IF you had the permission of the participants in the meeting, EVEN IF you are entirely legal and EVEN IF you did so with the knowledge of everyone involved. Again, I am not saying you WILL be fired; I am saying you CAN be fired.

    But it appears that you only want to hear that you are right, so fine, you are right.
     
  8. esteele

    esteele New Member

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    OP, your initial question was “Can I legally record a staff meeting between employees and employer in the state of Minnesota.” However, your last post implies that you want to know whether you have “a right” to unilaterally record staff meetings. The answer to that question is probably no. As a general matter, your supervisor (on behalf of your employer) can forbid you from recording a staff meeting, and you would not have any recourse or means to challenge his or her decision.

    As a municipal employee, you may have rights under the civil service protection system and/or a collective bargaining agreement. While I doubt either civil service protection or a union contract would authorize you to record staff meetings, I have read seemingly crazier “worker protections.” It may be worth it for you to examine whether you have any such rights.

    Again, though, if you are not specifically granted such rights, then you likely do not have a basis to insist upon recording a staff meeting.
     
  9. just3bears

    just3bears Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Mission completed

    My original question was "Can I legally record a staff meeting between employees and employer in the state of Minnesota?"
    I never asked if they could fire me. I have no concern whether or not they can legally fire me. I'm not sure how the topic of "legally recording" turned into "legally be fired".
    The staff meeting has occurred, I stated I would be taking notes with a audio recorder. I was met with no objections.
    All is well. Thank you.
     

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